The Angel's Jig
Long-shortlisted, 2017 ReLit Awards
Facing the dwindling years of his life, an old man waits for his turn on the auction block, hoping to be sold to a family as decent as the one he is leaving. It is not the first time he has been here, and it may not be the last.
Mute in life but loquacious on the page, the old man tells the colourful story of his rootless life. Abandoned by his family and first auctioned off at the age of seven — "Ladies and gentlemen, this boy may not be a rare gem, but he is certainly worth a look" — he moves from one farm to another, taking comfort from the people around him.
Daniel Poliquin's picaresque novel revisits an all-but-forgotten era, when orphaned children and the elderly poor were auctioned into a form of indentured servitude. Narrated through the eyes and ears of an unforgettable protagonist, The Angel's Jig is a joyous meditation on identity and the unpredictable voyage of existence.
A French language finalist for the 2015 Trillium Book Award, Le Vol de l'ange now appears in this lyrical translation by award-winning translator Wayne Grady.
Wayne Grady has translated eight novels and edited six anthologies of short stories. He won the Governor General's Award for his translation of On the Eighth Day by Antonine Maillet and was nominated for the 2005 Governor General's Award for his translation of Francine D'Amour's Return from Africa.
"A warm and whimsical meditation on one man's life and the web that connects him, even isolated by his self-imposed silence, to the lives of those around him." — Publishers Weekly
"A joy to read." — Atlantic Books Today
Pub date: April 5, 2016