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Digital Subscriptions > Quill & Quire > July/August 2018 > Americans in Paris

Americans in Paris

Patrick deWitt returns with a comedy of manners that contains unexpected levels of meaning and emotion BY DORY CERNY


* French Exit

Patrick deWitt

House of Anansi Press

DO NOT BE fooled by how disarmingly funny Patrick deWitt’s latest novel is. Though you will likely find yourself laughing out loud on numerous occasions while reading French Exit (assuming you enjoyed the author’s previous work or have a decent sense of humour), the book is a bleak, heartbreaking tragedy of the first order. The main characters are terrible people, the situation they find themselves in is untenable, and the ending is about as depressing as it gets. On the bright side, when the only animal in the book gets what’s coming to him, he fully deserves it, so there shouldn’t be any irate animal lovers hounding deWitt this time (as was the case with horse aficionados who took umbrage with the treatment of the animals in The Sisters Brothers).

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