Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Friday Water

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Friday Water

Cormorant Books, 2003

Friday Water is a novel that quietly celebrates a woman's life, even from the depths of breast cancer and loneliness. The characters become family any reader would wish to know and hold.

"Reading Linda Rogers' Friday Water is like sinking into a fragrant hot bath. The prose is fluid and envelops us, every pore and all five senses turned into the world of the main character." -- The Globe and Mail


From Friday Water, a revelatory day in the life of Ariel Grandmaison who is recovering from Breast cancer:

Seabirds conversing over the Selkirk waters beyond the park, the ticking of clocks in their house, the choir of vocalizing students, and the sound of slippers on the wooden floors in the Salt Mines, the family name for the studios on the main floor, comfort Ariel. She likes the sound of the hens making broody noises in the garden. These familiar sounds become music. When she was a child, in London, Veronica taught her to drum with a spoon on the iron fences that separated the houses from the sidewalk. All her life, she has listened for the percussive moment when one object strikes another. In the fraction of time when her foot hits the floor, she engages. The rest of the time, she hangs en l’air, from the roof of the world, waiting for rain, dripping taps, the slow descent of the glottis to the back of the tongue, which mark her agreement to return to earth. All the molecules of her being honour that contract.

Alone in the kitchen, she listens to her daughter and dances slowly, on the spot. Apart from the time just after she retired from the stage, when she couldn’t abide beautiful music because it made her want to dance, to live inside the notes and the steps, Ariel has instinctively sought the lyrical line. Her life has a score, each spontaneous step meticulously planned. Life depends on it.

What music should she choose for adolescent daughters, for cancer, for dying or not dying? She relies on her instinct, but now her musicality is skewed. She has dreams where she dances the wrong choreography. Dressed for Juliet, she comes on stage to find they are playing the music for the Black Swan. Her life has become a bad dress rehearsal. If she were superstitious, like most theatre people, she would allow herself to believe that meant it would turn out well. Now she must sit back and wait for the right cue, the resurrection of her perfect intuition.

Read more about Friday Water at Linda's website.