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Cures for Hunger: A Memoir

3.66  ·  Rating Details  ·  101 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
“Where did such longings reside in us, passed on through blood or stories? It seemed to me then, hearing his words, that a father’s life is a boy’s first story.” —from Cures for Hunger

At once an extraordinary family story and a highly unconventional portrait of the artist as a young man, Cures for Hunger is a singular, deeply affecting memoir, by one of the most acclaimed
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published June 12th 2012 by Milkweed Editions (first published April 27th 2012)
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Matt Falvey
Feb 10, 2012 Matt Falvey rated it really liked it
Deni Y. Bachard's early childhood in British Columbia was filled with a Tom Sawyerish adventure filled lifestyle that most boys could only dream of. His idol during this time was his father Andre, a no nonsense, rough around the edges French Canadian whose shady past was always only a step behind him. After a shocking split between his parents, Deni's new life with his mother in America leaves much to be desired. His inner battle between the two worlds he cherishes has him constantly guessing wh ...more
Apr 15, 2013 Kathy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book Review: Frey Fest 2013 author, Deni Bechard’s, “Cures for Hunger: A Memoir”. This book was huge, not in length, but in themes. I guess all memoirs are, our lives don’t follow just one path or theme, but we explore ourselves in many different ways. “Cures for Hunger” is boy-to-man story, a father-and-son story, a cross-country adventure store, a love of literature and a path-to-acceptance (or not) story. My favourite themes where the love of literature and father-and-son, but both also aggra ...more
May 12, 2012 Rebecca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got this book through the firstreads sweepstakes.

This book is awesome! It's not the type of book that I would normally choose...but the writing was incredible, as was the story. Deni creates his childhood and young adult world for us in perfect detail; not givinig or leaving out too much. His journey to understand himself through his father's life is both understandable and really very sad. You end up feeling very sorry for Deni the child as you see him growing into a character not unlike his
Jul 03, 2012 eric rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I think i might have liked this book if it had been edited down by about a third. I'm incredibly impressed that someone could remember their childhood in such minute detail.
Glassworks Magazine
Review by Christina Schillaci published on:

In Deni Y. Béchard’s memoir Cures for Hunger, the reader is introduced to the author as a young boy enamored with his father. The author’s father, André, harbors a wild thirst for danger that burrows in his personality and threatens his family. We see this in the opening scene when André takes his children to sit in his truck over railroad tracks. As the train barrels toward the family, André pretends the truck has stalled until
May 25, 2012 Litchik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Deni Béchard has crafted a revealing book in its truest sense. You will not be able to keep from reflecting on your relationships to your parents, their relationships to each other, to their parents, regardless of whether they were bank robbers, hippies, fishmongers or none of the above. The story he tells here is unique and he beautifully renders time and place down to scents and sounds and silence. You have been where he has been, tasted the food, walked among the Christmas tree orchard, lived ...more
Steve Wilson
Jun 05, 2013 Steve Wilson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a book I received through Goodreads and which unfortunately I left unread for a considerable time before picking it up to read.

The book is identified as a memoir although the author notes that at various times he had considered writing it as a work of fiction. I thing it would have worked as either.

The memoir is in essence the story is of the relationship between a father and a son and of the son's attempts to learn of his father's life especially he period before the son was born.

Mar 16, 2013 Louise rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don't usually read memoirs but I've liked everything by Bechard that I've read and this did not disappoint. Seventeen years in the making it is the story of Bechard and his father, a French-Canadian from the Gaspesie peninsula of Quebec. A poignant and honest narrative. As he described his father Andre, I found myself thinking repeatedly, "I've known men like that." I've known men for whom a show of tenderness was perceived as a weakness, men whose frustration and disappointment leave the thre ...more
John Paterson
Aug 20, 2013 John Paterson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: canada
Cures for Hunger is a memoir by Canadian novelist Deni Bechard that tells the story about his relation with his father, André, whose mysterious past is gradually revealed: where he was born (Quebec) and why he served time (bank robbery).

Bechard himself was born in British Columbia, and his mother was an American from Virgina. His mother and father separate, and young Deni's conflicts increase, by geography, nationality, criminality, as well as by the very different temperaments of his parents. H
Jul 26, 2013 Sylvie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I readbthia book in French and was impressed by the translation.
It was done for sure by a French Quebecoise who respected the style, the slang etc.

The book is a good memoir full of details.
However, at one point I found it a bit repetitive. Maybe it could have been cut by 20-30% and we would not have lost the essence of the text, the story, the feelings etc.

Do I recommand? Yes but not to everyone ...
May 06, 2012 David rated it really liked it
I got into this one pretty good for it being a memoir. Béchard definitely writes a good one, coming at it from the point of the still mysterious lingering questions as opposed to the reflection that has everything wrapped up in a neat little bow. He manages to convey his own sense of urgency in the memoir-ic quest and it really made it much more interesting for me.
Cory Nevill
Jun 02, 2013 Cory Nevill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book conjured up memories of a friend.'s father who was a larger than life figure and made all of our parents seem so dull and prosaic, we did not realize until years later the chaos he caused in the lives of his children. Like all great memoirs we are taken into another world while simultaneously considering our own. A very worthwhile read.
Nov 26, 2012 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
much profanity in the first half of the book. i was reccommended this book by a friend and nearly stopped reading when i was yet through the first chapter. but it drew me in and im glad i read it. a heartbreaking story that makes u appreciate family and friends. a good read if your ready to look past the profanity.
Jun 30, 2012 Jen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

A memoir of a boy who grew up with a bank robber for a father. He does a nice job of describing his mixed feelings regarding both his parents, as well as his changing views regarding what he would like to learn from them.
Samuelle Saindon
Nov 28, 2014 Samuelle Saindon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's an incredible memoir, one of the best I've read so far.
Vanessa Berjat
Aug 04, 2013 Vanessa Berjat rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
intimate description of a son's relationship with his criminal father. Beautiful vistas of life in Vancouver and British Columbia, as well a road trip across the America.
Jul 26, 2012 Shannon is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I was quite enjoying this book, the writing was engaging but I have since misplaced it and cannot finish!! I must track it down to read to the end.
Neil Crocker
Jan 31, 2016 Neil Crocker rated it liked it
A Book Club book. Denis Bechard's memoir/autobiography. 17 years in the making. His life was definitely not normal, but he's done okay.
Adam Wahlberg

Lovely writer, haunting story -- if you go for lost boys with tragic but charismatic fathers, you'll enjoy this a lot.
May 19, 2012 Kerrie marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
From the May 2012 Indie Next List.
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