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Last Seen

by Monique Proulx

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list price: $17.95
also available: Audiobook (cassette)
category: Fiction
published: 1997
publisher: Knopf Canada
imprint: Vintage Canada
  • Short-listed, Governor General's Literary Awards - Fiction
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Last Seen, Matt Cohen’s penultimate novel, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Trillium Book Award. Last Seen is a darkly comic story of two brothers and a woman who brings them both back to life. Harold, the older brother, is handsome and charming but dying of cancer. Alex is bookish and a scholar in Europe. With Francine, a nurse they both once loved, Alec cares for Harold until he dies. One day, Alec goes into a bar full of Elvis impersonators and there meets Francine—and Harold. Why has Harold come back from the dead? In this fragmentary tale of obsessive grieving, Cohen mixes moments of wry humour with touching pathos. Last Seen demonstrates that it takes more than death to untie the knot between two brothers.

From the eBook edition.

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Contributor notes

Shortly before his death in December 1999, Matt Cohen won the Governor General’s Award for his novel Elizabeth and After and the Harbourfront Festival Prize in honour of his life as a writer. In 1998 he received the Toronto Arts Award for writing. He is the author of thirteen novels as well as poetry, short stories, books for children and works of translation from French into English.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Editorial Review

"Read it. Last Seen will burn a hole in your heart." -Monday Magazine
"His best novel to date.... Almost unbearably sad, it's also, at times, very funny ... and full of a quirky, left-handed wisdom [for which] we give thanks." -Margaret Atwood, The Globe and Mail
"Unforgettable ... will leave empathetic readers sweaty-palmed and gasping." -NOW
"Last Seen is glorious. Matt Cohen composes an eloquent anthem to brotherhood, to earthly and unearthly attachments, and not least, to death itself. That he accomplishes this with beauty, grace and also great humour is simply remarkable." -Joan Barfoot

"Rich and imaginative ... Last Seen is an exquisitely written and uplifting novel." -Calgary Herald
"Last Seen is a dark, mordantly funny novel [and] a story of tremendous emotional power."-The Ottawa Citizen

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About the Author

Monique Proulx

Monique Proulx is one of Quebec’s most popular authors. A novelist, story writer and screenwriter, she has published six works of fiction, including Sex of the Stars, The Invisible Man at the Window, Aurora Montrealis, The Heart Is an Involuntary Muscle, which was a finalist for the 2002 Governor General’s Award for fiction (French language) and a selection for the 2004 CBC Canada Reads competition, and Wildlives. She also won the 1993 Prix Quï??bec-Paris, le Signet d’Or de Plaisir de lire, le Prix des libraires du Quï??bec and le Prix littï??raire Desjardins. She lives in Montreal, Quebec.
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