The Chrome Suite

The Chrome Suite

A Novel

Book - 1992
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Scriptwriter Amy Barber travels by car from Toronto to Winnipeg with her younger lover, Piotr, a Polish filmmaker. This is a journey shadowed by the future, and the past. The narrative moves from a small Manitoba town during one extraordinary hot summer at the close of the fifties when the death of Amy's sister changes everything, to the time when Amy marries, goes to live in the city, and begins to have reason to fear for her young son's well-being. Birdsell's haunting, almost tactile evocation of the dangerous territory of the past is infused with an uneasy nostalgia. Her unforgettable characters are portrayed as complex, fallible beings and, through them, she explores the private, sometimes cruel realm of relationships and the universal quest for an often elusive self-acceptance.
Publisher: Toronto : McClelland & Stewart, 1992.
ISBN: 9780771014529
Branch Call Number: BIR
Characteristics: 364 p.


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Aug 07, 2016

The inner dialogue and description of Amy's childhood as family outcast in the 1950s was incredible. Birdsell's memory for detail reminds me of local author Mary Cook. Although I found the pacing a bit uneven and didn't quite understand her three streams of narration, all from Amy's perspective (first person, third person, and screenwriter?), I identified with Amy and felt her pain and disappointments with herself and others.

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