Winner of the 2019 Scotiabank Giller Prize in Canada, Reproduction is a playful novel that begins with the meeting of two very different strangers in a hospital room occupied by their mothers, and weaves through three decades of the family and relationships that follow such an unexpected and unbidden encounter. Williams writes with a poet’s ear and an inventive spark, exploring love, class, race, and the multicultural community in Toronto where this artful story unfolds in ways both light and deeply felt.— Melinda
“I hardly know where to start with my need to talk about this book! Reproduction is a love story spanning three decades, from the early ’80s to the 2000s, starting in Toronto, a city of vast differences in wealth and cultures. The unlikely couple (Edgar, a rich, idle German, and Felicia, a poor 19-year-old immigrant from the West Indies) meet and start an unconventional relationship, with lifelong consequences for them both. Don’t let the 550-page count fool you: The writing style is the opposite of weighty and dense — it is mischievous, funny, moving, and full of stunning revelations about how strangers become family. Simply breathtaking!”
— Kelly Justice, Fountain Bookstore, Richmond, VA
WINNER OF THE 2019 SCOTIABANK GILLER PRIZE AND CBC'S BEST NOVEL OF THE YEAR, this best-selling debut novel is an energetically told, funny, and moving book about how strangers become family.
Reproduction tells a crooked love story in which love takes strange, winding paths and grows in a context shaped by community, family, longstanding friendships, and fleeting interactions that leave their mark on us forever.
Felicia, a nineteen-year-old student from a West Indian family, and Edgar, the lazy-minded and impetuous heir of a wealthy German family, meet by chance when their ailing mothers are assigned the same hospital room. After the death of Felicia's mother and the recovery of Edgar's, Felicia drops out of high-school and takes a job as caregiver to Edgar's mother. The odd-couple relationship between Edgar and Felicia, ripe with miscommunications, misunderstandings, and reprisals for perceived and real offenses, has some unexpected results.
Years later, Felicia's son Armistice--"Army" for short--is a teenager fixated on a variety of get-rich-quick schemes that are as comic as they are indicative of the immigrant son's fear of falling through the cracks. When Edgar re-enters Felicia's life at a typically (for him) inopportune moment, the book's exhilarating final act is set in the motion and the full import of its title is revealed.
"This gorgeous novel vibrates with life...Stylistically inventive and narratively compelling, Reproduction is stunning."--Aminatta Forna, author of The Memory of Love
A JUNE 2020 INDIE NEXT GREAT READ