After two acclaimed historical novels, one of Canada's most celebrated young writers now gives us the vibrant, contemporary story of a man studying the suddenly confusing shape his life has taken, and why, and what his responsibilities-- as a husband, a father, a brother, and an uncle-- truly are.
Charlie Bellerose leads a seminomadic existence, traveling widely to manage the language academies he has established in different countries. After separating, somewhat amicably, from his wife, he moves from Madrid back to his native Canada to set up a new school, and for the first time he forges a meaningful relationship with his brother, who's going through a vicious divorce. Charlie's able to make a fresh start in Toronto but longs for his twelve-year-old daughter, whom he sees only via Skype and the occasional overseas visit. After a chance encounter with a girlfriend from his university days, a woman now happily married and with children of her own, he works through a series of memories-including a particularly painful one they share-as he reflects on questions of family, home, fatherhood, and love. But two tragic events (one long past, the other very much in the present) finally threaten to destroy everything he's ever believed in.