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What I'm Trying to Say is Goodbye

by Lois Simmie

What I'm Trying to Say is Goodbye

The funny, sad and engaging story of a shattered family's attempt to figure out where exactly each member fits.

In Simmie's trademark style, this sweeping new novel is the funny, sad and engaging story of a shattered family's attempt to figure out where exactly each member fits.

Matthew's a burned-out, recovering alcoholic ex-newspaperman who finds himself almost nightly roaming the halls of the Victoria apartment building he looks after while fighting to stay on the wagon. Delia's his estranged wife, who still likes him - she left him reluctantly when she didn't know what else to do - but doesn't really trust him. Kate's their daughter, trapped in a loveless marriage with Michael, her religious zealot husband who can't wait for the end of the world. Sam's the grandson, caught in the middle but looking hard for a way out. 

With this heartbreaking cast of characters, Lois Simmie assembles a true fictional tour de force, a roller coaster of a novel that just won't let up until the final page.

As Matthew deals daily with the eccentric tenants of his building and struggles to resist the powerful temptation to hit the bottle again, he's not necessarily in a reflective mood. Lord knows he's got his own troubles. But as sobriety takes a bit more root in him and he begins to look outward, he sees that he's not the only one with problems. In fact, maybe others - people that he loves in his own way and still, in their own ways, love him - have problems bigger than his. But these are people he's let down in the past with his cowardly ways, with his weakness, with his self-absorption. It's going to take every ounce of courage that he's got, all the wisdom he can muster, all the wherewithal he's not sure he possesses, to try to make a difference. It was too late once. But if he fails this time, it really is goodbye.


5.5" x 8.5" 328 pages
19.95 CDN; 17.95 USD
E-Book Price
Fiction Tradepaper Adult
Lois Simmie
Author Photo

About the Author

Lois Simmie is a true veteran of the Canadian writing scene, a storyteller of the highest order who is known and acclaimed for both her children's literature and her adult work. She's the author of the Canadian classic novel They Shouldn't Make You Promise That reissued by Coteau in the fall of 2002. Her short-fiction collections include Betty Lee Bonner Lives Here and Pictures, and she wrote the non-fiction book The Secret Lives of John Wilson. Her books for children include What Holds Up the Moon? and Mr. Got-to-Go and Arnie. She lives in Saskatoon.


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