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Review: The Break by Katherena Vermette

Unphilosophize By Unphilosophize Published on May 4, 2017

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I still have a lot of feelings about this book. I finished it slightly before the start of the Canada Reads competitions this year and Candy Palmater, who was defending the book, signed my copy at a Canada Reads event. This was before all hell broke lose on the first day and it got voted off. This is by far the worst thing that has happened in my reading world this year.


The Break is a weird sort of mystery. It opens with an assault and the rest of the book goes through different points of views and the events of the night of the assault are slowly revealed.


The story is told by a family of women whose relationship, some of them distant, other fraught, and some who were very close; and both revealed and mended throughout the novel.


During Canada Reads two of the panellists said that they did not like the book or feel that it was the novel that Canada needs to read, this year's theme, because of the under-representation of "good men". I yelled about this for about a week. Perhaps longer. (for full details see me twitter) Why they felt that a book about women, told by women, need to have men in it I'm not entirely sure. Secondly, there were several good men in the book, one of them was even a narrator. These comments were so infuriating, especially given that a lot of the books that I have read have male main characters and the only female characters are often poorly written and secondary.


I'm still upset.


This is a beautiful written book about an important topic. It is the book that all Canadians need to read. It is the book that should have won Canada Reads. I rate this book a 10/10. Absolutely wonderful.

Lost soul. Graduated with my Bachelor of Arts Combined Honours in the History of Science and Technology, and Philosophy in May 2016. Enjoys math, knitting, and baseball. Avid reader and ... Show More

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