My October, Claire Holden Rothman

“Reality boiled down to this in the end: the story you told.”


This review needs to be quick. I feel as if I’ve fallen behind, even though I’m not the last one to have finished their first book.

I liked this book. I struggled to stop reading and go to bed at midnight so that I could be a well-rested adult today. My October is an enticing read that kept me turning pages, but there’s really not much to it.

My quick summary to everyone who asked me what I was reading was that this book was about the after-effects of the October Crisis–but that barely touches it.

(Sidebar: One of my co-workers had not heard of the FLQ and the October Crisis.  If you do not know what it is either, please leave this page and start reading this Wikipedia article. And then go back to high school. Then come back here.)

Really, it’s about a failing family and their tangential relationship to that event and how it’s shaped the Canada they live in today. I guess that still makes it about the effects of the FLQ, but this book read more like a soap opera than a serious discussion about the reverberations of the FLQ. Family secrets were dropped like hot potatoes, as if family members had only been waiting for a coded phrase to reveal secret affairs or hidden motivations. Resolution came easily.

I still enjoyed this book. And I think you should read it. Just don’t move it up your stack.

Books read: 1 


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