Children of Heroes

Children of Heroes - Lyonel Trouillot

Children of Heroes

Their father's favorite saying, between drinks and blows, was, "Life holds only bad surprises, and the last one will be death." And now, Colin observes of the man sprawled under all the broken furniture, their father was definitely and forever out of surprises. Children of Heroes is the story Colin tells of what happened-and what happened before that. Testimony, confession, a child's outpouring: this is his painfully matter-of-fact account of how he and his older sister, Mariéla, killed the man who tyrannized them and their piously pathetic mother, who is now a "blank." As he describes their flight from the slum in Haiti to an uncertain somewhere called "far away," Colin conjures a bleak picture of the life he and his sister are trying to leave behind. And whether these two-children only in age-are guilty or merely victims of the violence festering in their city is a question only the reader can answer. In its picture of a world in which the heroes and the destroyers-whether fathers or leaders-are often indistinguishable, and where life's poetry and poverty are inextricably linked, this book tells a story of Haiti that is at once intimate, universal, and otherworldly Lyonel Trouillot is a poet, novelist, and essayist of the post-Duvalierist generation of Haitian writers. Linda Coverdale is a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and the award-winning translator of over fifty books, including Trouillot's Street of Lost Footsteps (PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Prize finalist) and Patrick Chamoiseau's School Days and Chronicle of the Seven Sorrows, all available in Bison Books editions.
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Their father's favorite saying, between drinks and blows, was, "Life holds only bad surprises, and the last one will be death." And now, Colin observes of the man sprawled under all the broken furniture, their father was definitely and forever out of surprises. Children of Heroes is the story Colin tells of what happened-and what happened before that. Testimony, confession, a child's outpouring: this is his painfully matter-of-fact account of how he and his older sister, Mariéla, killed the man who tyrannized them and their piously pathetic mother, who is now a "blank." As he describes their flight from the slum in Haiti to an uncertain somewhere called "far away," Colin conjures a bleak picture of the life he and his sister are trying to leave behind. And whether these two-children only in age-are guilty or merely victims of the violence festering in their city is a question only the reader can answer. In its picture of a world in which the heroes and the destroyers-whether fathers or leaders-are often indistinguishable, and where life's poetry and poverty are inextricably linked, this book tells a story of Haiti that is at once intimate, universal, and otherworldly Lyonel Trouillot is a poet, novelist, and essayist of the post-Duvalierist generation of Haitian writers. Linda Coverdale is a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and the award-winning translator of over fifty books, including Trouillot's Street of Lost Footsteps (PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Prize finalist) and Patrick Chamoiseau's School Days and Chronicle of the Seven Sorrows, all available in Bison Books editions.
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