Ann Diamond's Reviews > La Constellation du Lynx

La Constellation du Lynx by Louis Hamelin
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's review
Oct 30, 2010

it was amazing

Without a doubt, this novel has saved my life. I was 19 during the October Crisis, a passive spectator in a national drama that never quite made sense, not at the time, and not in retrospect. Louis Hamelin has changed the past by going back and, like a good journalist, resurrecting the ghosts, especially of Pierre Laporte (alias Paul Lavoie) who haunts these pages. What will keep most of the anglophones away is the thick Quebecois dialect, the multi-layered plot, the sheer length. It took me three weeks, but I made it to the end. I never lost interest, could barely bring myself to put it down, and when I reached the end, I felt like a satisfied tourist returning from an extended crawl through the Great Pyramid.

I plan to write more about this elsewhere. (Just watch me.) It is the book of the year. It is a massive achievements not just of research and reflection, but redemption. How long will it take for the truth to penetrate the public consciousness, which has been poisoned by decades of disinformation? Is it too late for Canada to face its own colonial darkness? Can this epic even be translated into English, without bringing down another War Measures act? I have my doubts about that, too...

In the meantime, this novel should be given as a Christmas present to every Quebecer. It's as if the dead child at the end of Claude Jutra's film Mon Oncle Antoine had suddenly resurrected and walked back into our lives. Now we all have a chance to grow up.
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Reading Progress

October 30, 2010 – Started Reading
October 30, 2010 – Shelved
November 6, 2010 –
page 100
16.67% "I am really enjoying this incredible journey through Quebec and the October Crisis 1970, the years leading up to it, the years that followed, the unsolved mysteries... fascinating and fun"
November 16, 2010 –
page 450
75.0% "More and more impressive as the plot deepens..."
November 17, 2010 –
page 450
75.0% "I haven't reached the end yet, but at this stage Hamelin has just convinced me of something I already knew: the "official story" of the events of Quebec's 1970 October Crisis, does not hold water. This is, of course, fiction, but it's also heavily based on research and interviews. The characters' names have been changed, but they can be recognized by anyone who was here at the time...."
November 27, 2010 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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message 1: by Elhara (new)

Elhara “Just watch me”
Caught me a little off guard, then I laughed out loud.

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