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After

Overview

Nominated for the Governor General's Literary Awards 2005, (Children's Literature, Text)

Fifteen-year-old Francis’s father has committed suicide and nothing will be the same again. Suicide is ugly, unglamorous, and it is never a solution. Its aftermath is dreadful.

At first, Francis feels a terrible guilt. Could he have been a better son? What if he hadn’t left his home in ...

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After

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Overview

Nominated for the Governor General's Literary Awards 2005, (Children's Literature, Text)

Fifteen-year-old Francis’s father has committed suicide and nothing will be the same again. Suicide is ugly, unglamorous, and it is never a solution. Its aftermath is dreadful.

At first, Francis feels a terrible guilt. Could he have been a better son? What if he hadn’t left his home in Montreal to go on a brief holiday in New York the weekend it happened? Soon the guilt turns to anger and then to a sadness so profound that he thinks he can’t bear it.

After is the map of a year following the suicide of a family member. In the course of months, with the love of his mother, with counseling, and with the balm of time, Francis takes his first steps toward coming to terms with his father’s – and his family’s – tragedy. After is intensely personal, but it will resonate with anyone who has faced the loss of a loved one.

This brilliant autobiographical first novel is an acute analysis of the grieving process. Although it is steeped in Francis’s sadness, it is ultimately a story of hope.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-Francis is called home from a class trip to find his family forever changed: his father hung himself in the attic of their Montreal home. The 15-year-old is now faced with a life different from any he could imagine. His friendships and the way he views situations shift, and the roles he assumes in taking care of his younger brother and in dealing with his mother all reflect the fact that he is forced to become an adult before his time. Yet the teen is a child who misses his father deeply, who does not understand why the man would commit such an act, and who questions what he could have done to prevent the tragedy. The resounding theme in this autobiographical novel is that darkness eventually gives way to light. Francis goes through the phases of grieving; the chapters of the book reflect his journey. Just as he thinks that everything is on track, the grief that he feels overwhelms him and pulls him back down into depression. Ultimately, however, he finds a balance. Although the book is well written, interspersing elements of the culture of Montreal, it is a difficult read, bleak and somber. On the dedication page, Chalifour says, "If you've lost someone close, this book is for you. You know what I'm talking about." Indeed, this title will appeal to a specific audience.-Emily Garrett, Naaman Forest High School, Garland, TX Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887767050
  • Publisher: Tundra
  • Publication date: 10/11/2005
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 743,307
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.68 (h) x 0.29 (d)

Meet the Author

Francis Chalifour was born and raised in Quebec and now lives in Toronto, where he teaches social sciences to grades seven and eight. He is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Education at the University of Ottawa, specializing in the influence of the mourning process on children’s learning. Francis has been writing for most of his life. His first published work was the French novel Zoom Papaye, and he has contributed articles to Maclean’s, Le Devoir, and La Presse. He has also hosted a radio program and worked for Télévision française de l’Ontario.

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