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Fiction. Translated by Aimee Wall. On June 6, 2012, Vickie Gendreau was diagnosed with a brain tumour. In between treatments, between hospital stays and her "room of her own," she wrote TESTAMENT, an autofictional novel in which she imagines her death and at the same time, bequeaths to her friends and family both the fragmented story of her last year and the stories of the loved ones who keep her memory alive, in language as raw and flamboyant as she was.In the teasing and passionate voice of a twenty-three-year-old writer, inspired as much by literature as by YouTube and underground music, Gendreau's sense of image, her relentless self–deprecation, and the true emotion in every sentence add up to an uncompromising work that reflects the life of a young woman who lived without inhibitions, for whom literature meant everything right up until the end.In this way, TESTAMENT inverts the elegiac, "grief memoir" form and plays with the notion of a last testament, thereby beating any would–be eulogists to the punch.A challenging work at the level of both form and style, the fragmented, polyphonic nature of the text and its occasionally dense or opaque prose contribute to this novel's incredibly unique voice and style. With its unexpectedly raw and open and somehow still occasionally funny perspectives on illness, dying, and death, this book will appeal to lovers of memoir, autofictional narrative, and readers who appreciate a palpable tension between fact and fiction.
Vickie Gendreau was born in Montréal in 1989. While working in Montréal strip clubs from October 2009 to June 2012, she was also active in the literary community, where she participated in events like the Off- Festival de poésie de Trois-Riviéres. She was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2012 and passed away a year later. Her first novel, Testament, written after her diagnosis, was published in fall 2012. It was longlisted for the 2013 Prix littéraire France- Québec. Her second novel, Drama Queens, was published posthumously in 2014. Both of her novels have been translated into English by Aimee Wall and published by Book*hug: TESTAMENT in 2016, and DRAMA QUEENS in 2019.Author City: Montreal CAN
Newfoundland-native Aimee Wall is a writer and translator. She has translated several novels, including Jean-Philippe Baril Guerard's SPORTS AND PASTIMES (Book*hug, 2017), Vickie Gendreau's DRAMA QUEENS (Book*hug, 2019) and TESTAMENT (Book*hug, 2016), and Maude Veilleux's Prague, a co-translation with Aleshia Jensen. Her first novel, We Jane, is forthcoming from Book*hug. She lives in Montréal.Author City: Montreal, QC CAN