Vandal Love: A Novel
An astonishing novel of epic ambition, Vandal Love--winner of the prestigious Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for best first book in 2007--follows generations of a unique French-Canadian family across North America and through the twentieth century.
A family curse--a genetic trick resulting from centuries of hardship--causes the Herv children to be born either giants or runts. Book One follows the giants’ line, exploring Jude Herv ’s career as a boxer in Georgia and Louisiana in the 1960s, his escape from that brutal life alone with his baby daughter Isa, and her eventual decision to enter into a strange, chaste marriage with a much older man. Book Two traces a different kind of life entirely, as the runts of the family discover that their power lies in a kind of unifying love. Fran ois seeks the identity of his missing father for years, while his own son, Harvey, flees from modern society into spiritual quests. But none of the Herv s can abandon their longing for a place where they might find others like themselves.
In assured and mystically powerful prose, Deni Y. B chard tells a wide-ranging, spellbinding story of a family trying to create an identity in an unwelcoming landscape. Imbued throughout with a deep sensitivity to the physical world, Vandal Love is a breathtaking literary debut about the power of love to create and destroy--in our lives, and in our history.
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VANDAL LOVEUser Review - Jane Doe - Kirkus
Even better than his simultaneously published memoir (Cures for Hunger), Béchard's haunting first novel follows three generations that can't find a home in this world.Native soil for the Hervé family ... Read full review
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