- Paperback: 226 pages
- Publisher: Goose Lane Editions; 2 edition (September 7, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0864924925
- ISBN-13: 978-0864924926
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,810,577 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Elle 2nd Edition
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"Lascivious, bizarre, entertaining... Glover has a wonderful facility for imagery, language, farce, and the grotesque." (Quill & Quire 2012-11-30)
"[Elle is] a maginificent hail Mary of pure imagination... a ribald, raunchy wit with a talent for searing self-investigation... Glover's prose throughout, while being consistent in voice, is also a rich blend of elegance and punch, raw affect and slippery allusion." (Globe and Mail 2012-11-30)
"Historical fiction at its most innovative, a seriously whimsical book full of arcane lore from the first days of the European settlement of the New World. A remarkable, wondrous experience." (Wayne Johnston 2017-02-09)
From the Inside Flap
Imagine a 16th-century society belle turned Robinson Crusoe, a female Don Quixote with an Inuit Sancho Panza, and you'll have an inkling of what's in store in Douglas Glover's outrageously modern historical novel. Mysterious, mystical, and thoroughly original, Elle is lusty, subversive riff on the discovery of the New World at the moment of first contact.
Based on a true story, Elle chronicles the ordeals of a young Frenchwoman marooned on the desolate Isle of Demons during Jacques Cartier's last, ill-fated attempt to colonize North America. In a carnal whirlwind of myth and story, of death, lust, and love, of beauty and hilarity, Glover brings the past violently and unexpectedly into the present.
Top customer reviews
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If you like tall tales, mesmerizing writing, and a spunky heroine whose voice possesses a sweet wryness, then this book is for you. It won the Governor General's Award for Fiction, and it is easy to see why. Five stars.
The heroine of the the story is a precocious young French woman voyaging to the New World in the 1500s. She's been sent to learn to temper her wild ways. She is ejected from the ship on the Isle of Devils which appears to be somewhere near Labrador (since there was Blanc Sablon reference and Blanc Sablon is in Labrador.) She has been ejected for her loose ways in ahving sex with a man who is part of the expedition.
She manages to survive the ordeal somewhat miraculously and becomes part of the country of Canada interacting with the natives.
This should have been interesting but I found the prose to be all over the place. The writer didn't seem to have a good idea as to where he was trying to go. I didn't find the lead very interesting. She liked sex and that seemed to be about all that was interesting about her.
The story told in the first person and as she is confused so is the story.
I wanted to like this but really strongly disliked it.
I don't recommend it.
I haven't been this engrossed by a book in ages. It's raw and richly imaginative, yet manages to provide a historical picture of what it must have been like to live in Canada in the 1540's. At times hilarious, and other times breathtakingly beautiful, this is the kind of book you won't want to put down until it's finished, and when it's finished you might just be inclined to read it again.
Glover's characters are strongly developed, but he throws them into a meandering plot that is difficult to follow, and not all that interesting. While the conflicts encounterd by the female lead are difficult, and should be inspiring, her solutions and reactions provide little entertainment. The 'racy' sexual encounters of the title character add little to the actual story.