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Perron, Jacques.

Toronto, Anansi, c1984. 245pp, paper, $9.95, ISBN 0-88784-140-6. (Anansi Fiction #48) CIP

Grades 12 and up
Reviewed by Philip K. Harber

Volume 13 Number 4
1985 July

The variety and originality of these works is their most striking quality. One has entered Perron's world of the imagination, in which anything may happen, provided that it is derived from the folklore of rural Quebec, which the country general practitioner seems to have been collecting all his life, together with all the local fait divers and eccentricities of his patients and friends. However, Perron's writings go beyond realism and folklore to a dream world in which animals may mingle and talk with humans, e.g., "The Dead Cow in the Canyon," or "Melie and the Bull." Some are just episodes, pocket tragedies with ironic endings; most are pessimistic and many are susceptible of several interpretations. Some are reminiscent of talk-tales, e.g., "The Wool Nightshirt and the Horsehair Tunic," and classical myth, e.g. "Ulysses" and "The Sirens." These could be contrasted with French-Canadian legends and tales or related to the French theatre of the absurd, e.g., Rhinoceros by Ionesco. Recommended for senior high school libraries and adult collections.

Philip K. Harber, Toronto Board of Education, Toronto, Ont.
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