Dans l'ombre de Maggie by Sheila McLeod Arnopoulos , Translated by Pan Bouyoucas
Winner of QWF Translation Prize in 2002
This hard-hitting novel explores the gritty underbelly of contemporary urban life revealing the shocking chasm between demonized media images and the everyday life of the uneducated poor. At the centre is 37-year-old Maggie MacKinnan, a star reporter at the Montreal Tribune who is wrenched from her life of respectability when she meets Nick, a young biker who has been arrested, along with his stripper wife, Eileen, for causing the death of their infant son. As a reporter covering the court case, Maggie is caught between her newspaper’s hunger for a sensational story about child abuse and her own growing awareness that there are no simple answers. Probing deeper into the child’s death, Maggie uncovers the reality of ordinary people with no skills who are forced to live by any means. This is a novel that removes the facade of the justice system, opens the doors to the horror of prisons, and eventually reveals what a thin line separates the conventional middle-class person from the world of crime and prostitution. In the end, Maggie is transformed by the darkness that she enters and, so great is the skill of Arnopoulos as a novelist, even her readers come back similarly changed.
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