Chez l'arabe Signed Paperback Edition


Signed by the author, Mireille Silcoff.

A dazzling debut collection from award-winning journalist and New York Times Magazine contributor Mireille Silcoff.

Inspired by the real life medical struggles of the author, this stunning debut collection opens with a gripping portrait of chronic illness in a series of linked stories about a woman in her mid-thirties, who is trapped in her elegantly accoutered Montreal townhouse — and in her own mind and body. As she struggles with her health, amongst an increasingly indifferent husband and volatile mother, she encounters unimaginable depths of loneliness and realizes that, even after she recovers, her life will never be the same.

As the collection progresses, it picks up the threads of other people’s lives that have also been abruptly upended –- through death, divorce, illness and estrangements –- leaving them shocked and disoriented as they try to navigate their lives in new directions. A Montreal cookbook author remembers her stepmother's exquisite taste in dinner parties, and her failed marriage — both of which she seemed to inherit. An abandoned wife catches her glamorous author friend stealing from an old, billionaire widower. A woman loses her daughter to suicide while her architect husband, in the grips of Alzheimer’s years later, sits on a subway platform day after day, drawing hearts for all the young women he sees.

Silcoff’s stories are sophisticated, detailed, and infused with humour, intelligence and touching emotional insights into the human condition.