“Marie-moi, Peter Pan”: taking care of his exit

At 33, Élizabeth Leblanc, married and mother of two, learns that she suffers from a degenerative disease. As her brain slowly deteriorates, her eyesight deteriorates, her words become more and more eccentric or incoherent, the eccentric young woman wishes to leave a mark before leaving. She thus launches into the painting of neon cats while listening to disco.

While she is still young and beautiful, she also wants to prove to herself that she can seduce like a heroine of Jane Austen or Emily Brontë. A friendship ensues with a man younger than her. An interested friendship for the second. Fortunately, her faithful husband does not hold it against her. Over the years, Élizabeth, who does not want to end her days in a CHSLD, juggles with different options: aid in dying, hire a hitman or play Thelma and Louise with her best friend, Doriane Doré. In the meantime, she dreams of marrying Peter Pan and flying with him to Neverland.

“Peter and me, we’re going to send him flowers, in old age, lots of rotten old flowers, and we’ll laugh, squeal, yes, for a fucking long time, smoking and eating sour candy!” “

With an admirable sense of observation of the small gestures that say a lot about those who perform them, a very living language that she is not afraid to abuse so that the dialogues and the interior monologues ring more true, Laviolette attached to the fate of Elizabeth and, by the gang, of Doriane, from 1994 to 2049. Rarely have illness, old age and death been treated with so much insolence, humor and freshness as in this novel with disheveled ellipses that starts laboriously.

The closer we get to the fateful moment, the more the pen of this native of Sainte-Thérèse, who signs her first novel, becomes raw, frank and fanciful. This gap between the characters’ freedom to think and the sad reality of the disease thus prevents him from sinking into pathos. And yet, she doesn’t skimp on sad details to illustrate Elizabeth’s decrepitude. Ode to resilience coupled with a snub to death, Marry me, peter pan celebrates life with contagious excitement.

Marry me, peter pan


Laviolette, XYZ, Montréal, 2021, 287 pages

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