New novel by Marianne Brisebois: the weight of loneliness

New novel by Marianne Brisebois: the weight of loneliness


After publishing Except Sam Is Dead, where she reflected on grief, the writer Marianne Brisebois is interested in loneliness, the problems that undermine relationships, and reconstruction in her new novel, Quelques solitudes. She also addresses, with authenticity, other themes, in particular that of relationships that break up in the twenties and eating disorders, in men.

Liliane has been with Julien for ten years when their relationship breaks up, without warning. Expelled from her own life, she takes a room in the large Laval house of Simon-Pierre, hoping to heal her wounds. Little does she know that her new roommate is also being flayed by an eating disorder that cost him his relationship.

The first times of their cohabitation are a little incongruous and filled with awkwardness. But by getting to know each other a little better, Liliane and Simon-Pierre realize that they see, in each other, the reflection of their own loneliness. One small step after another, they will tame each other and grow.

Being well, alone

Marianne Brisebois talks about breaking up, rebuilding oneself, romantic relationships when one is young in his new novel.

“My book is called Quelques solitudesbecause I thought it was a bit ambitious to talk about loneliness in general, because there are different ways to experience it. We can undergo it, even choose it. It can be just at the level of feeling”, she comments.

“In the case of my character, I wanted to talk about a loneliness that does not come from the fact that we are physically alone. Even if you have people around you, even if you have a lover, even if you have a job, even if you have all that, you can still feel this loneliness. I wondered where it came from and what it felt like to feel like you belonged overnight.”

Marianne Brisebois notes that it's okay to be well, alone, for an extended period, but is not convinced that for the majority of people, this is really a winning strategy, especially in their twenties, when we are full of energy and that we have a lot to share.

“Liliane had this desire for discussions, for contact with people, but she couldn't find it around her. Eventually, after the end of the relationship with her boyfriend, she will really find herself alone. She decides to go and live on an island, which is a bit of a metaphor for loneliness.”

Finding her place

She also wanted to talk about long-time relationships in your early twenties.

“It's not very common, but it can still happen that you are in a relationship with someone you fell in love with when you were 16 . I wanted to show a couple that is coming to an end, and to show that the person who was perfect for you at 16 may be less so at 24 or 26. For Liliane, it was linked to the fact that she never felt out of place.”