A Guide to Animal Behaviour


Douglas GloverFinalist, 1991 Governor General’s Award for Fiction

“Defines the word ‘mercurial’ in its finest sense — fast, eloquent, shrewd, and impish, like the Roman messenger of the gods.” (Globe & Mail)

“There is an admirable breadth of imagination here . . . without any wavering of Glover’s sure touch, and each character and situation is examined with an intelligence that borders on brilliance.” (Books in Canada)

“One of the most consistently inventive collections to appear in a long time.” (Montreal Gazette)

“Glover’s style is crisp and precise, his observations chillingly perceptive and satirically biting.” (Vancouver Sun)

“A very good writer, one of Canada’s best, because of his ability to round up humour, voice, poetic insight, and bombastic imagination, and corral them harmoniously in one story.” (Halifax Daily News)

Douglas Glover

“Glover’s penetrating insight, inventiveness, and quick mood changes explore the ephemeral nature of the self, often in danger of disintegrating in the reality of human suffering.” (Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature)

“Nothing can prepare a reader for the range and depth of the talent that is revealed in the collection . . . Glover makes that mystery [of existence] even more mysterious, and he does so with wit and amazing leaps of imagination . . . A kind of alternative universe, or at least the same universe from unusual perspectives.” (Event)

“Breathtaking diversity . . . masterly delineation of character . . . full of enduring and honest insight. You never know where you are with Douglas Glover. As soon as you think you’re on safe ground, he undermines your sense of complacency and security — the mark of a fine writer.” (Canadian Book Review Annual)

“Incredible versatility and range . . . A wonderfully dry humour . . . a very good book.  (Bill Gaston, Fiddlehead)

“Glover’s carefully constructed and cleanly written stories are a pleasure to read, and evidence of an awareness of the human condition, with all its dissolution and despair, that is ultimately hopeful.” (Canadian Forum)

“As hilarious and as original as it [is] entertaining to read . . . [Glover] is surely one of the most exciting young talents in this country today.”  (The Western Star, Cornerbrook NF)

Table of Contents

Story Carved in Stone — Swain Corliss, Hero of Malcolm’s Mills (now Oakland, Ontario), November 6, 1814 — Why I Decide to Kill Myself and Other Jokes — The Canadian Travel Notes of Abbé Hugues Pommier, Painter, 1663-1680 — The Obituary Writer — Turned into a Horse by Witches, Port Rowan, U.C., 1798 — A Man in a Box — A Guide to Animal Behaviour — I, A Young Man Called Early to the Wars — The Travesty of Sleep — Woman Gored by Bison Lives.

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the French translation from Éditions de l’instant même