Hamish Hamilton Canada has just published Kim Echlin's third novel
and it's unreal.
The Disappeared is a slim passionate work about the love between Ann Greaves, a Montrealer and her Cambodian lover Serey, a musician and student in self-imposed exile in the late 70s during the time of Pol Pot and the infamous Killing Fields.
Echlin takes on a huge subject with deftness and an extraordinary poetics.
She has effortlessly blended both an evocative language with an almost anthropological telling of Serey's returning to Cambodia during the brief period when the borders opened and before the genocide and Vietnamese invasion.
Echlin has compressed the time-line, so I may be off in that regard.
Nevertheless, The Disappeared is extraordinary--a heartbreaker of a novel possessed of beauty and a fearless surefootedness.
I'd be shocked to read a more affecting Canadian novel this year.
Posted by Dave