Denis Thériault

The Peculiar Life of a Lonely Postman

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Bilodo lives a solitary daily life, routinely completing his postal rounds every day and returning to his empty Montreal apartment. But he has found a way to break the cycle — Bilodo has taken to stealing people's mail, steaming open the envelopes, and reading the letters inside. And so it is he comes across Ségolène's letters. She is corresponding with Gaston, a master poet, and their letters are each composed of only three lines. They are writing each other haikus. The simplicity and elegance of their poems move Bilado and he begins to fall in love with her. But one day, out on his round, he witnesses a terrible and tragic accident. Just as Gaston is walking up to the post-box to mail his next haiku to Ségolène, he is hit by a car and dies on the side of the road. And so Bilodo makes an extraordinary decision — he will impersonate Gaston and continue to write to Ségolène under this guise. But how long can the deception continue for? Denis Thériault weaves a passionate and elegant tale, comic and tragic with a love story at its heart.
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100 printed pages

Impressions

    MMshared an impression3 years ago
    👍Worth reading
    🎯Worthwhile
    🚀Unputdownable

    Interesting read, great concept, lovely, charming prose.

    Daniël Stalpersshared an impression6 years ago
    👍Worth reading

    Excellently thought out novel that kept me fascinated from beginning to end. The entire story is written in a style that allows it to be compared to Japanese literary masters.

    Eureka Alphonsoshared an impression6 years ago
    👍Worth reading
    💞Loved Up

Quotes

    pranahas quoted2 years ago
    More alluring by far were letters from others.
    pranahas quoted2 years ago
    He used to send letters to himself, but the experience had been a disappointment. He’d gradually stopped, and didn’t really miss it; he didn’t miss himself.
    Vitahas quoted6 years ago
    There was anything and everything, coming from here, there, and everywhere: letters from close relatives and faraway correspondents, letters from beer tasters comparing notes, from globetrotters writing to their mothers, from retired steam locomotive firemen listing their bumps and bruises. There were those overly reassuring letters servicemen dispatched from Afghanistan to their anxious wives, and those worried words uncles wrote to their nieces concerning secrets that shouldn’t be revealed for anything in the world, and those Dear John or Dear Mary letters in which circus acrobats in Las Vegas broke up with their former lovers, and there were even hate letters crammed with insults spilling out onto the envelope.
    But above all there were love letters. Because even after Valentine’s Day, love remained the most common denominator, the subject linking the greatest number of pens. Love in every grammatical form and every possible tone, dished up in every imaginable shape: passionate letters or courteous ones, sometimes suggestive and sometimes chaste, either calm or dramatic, occasionally violent, often lyrical, and especially moving when the feelings were expressed in simple terms, and never quite so touching as when the emotions hid between the lines, burning away almost invisibly behind a screen of innocuous words.
    Once he’d read and reread the letter of the day, had savoured it down to the very marrow, Bilodo made a photocopy of it for his records.

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