Unholy Stories


72 pages
ISBN 1-55071-201-2
DDC C843'.54





Translated by Nora Alleyn

Marguerite Andersen is a professor of French studies at the University
of Guelph.


Carole David is an award-winning Québécois poet and novelist. Unholy
Stories is a collection of tales about marginal people living in a city
that resembles Montreal: drug addicts, doctors without licences, young
girls who cut themselves with razor blades, children in emergency wards,
and those who help their mothers steal in order to survive.

In “Monster,” a woman in a restaurant observes an apparently
perfect couple. “Their conversation is very animated and punctuated
with flirty little kisses all mixed in with pasta, salad and mouthfuls
of wine.” It later becomes evident that the woman is disabled, blind,
and hideous, a true “angel of darkness.” But, asks the other woman,
who has by now shared a meal with her boyfriend, who, in fact, is the

As in any large, multicultural city, language presents a problem: the
characters often have trouble understanding what others are saying. Yet
David’s language, artfully translated by Nora Alleyn, is always
coherent. The book’s cover illustration is elegant and evocative.


David, Carole., “Unholy Stories,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 26, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/16334.