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Walkups, Lance Blomgren (Conundrum Press) 

Be a voyeur through this cool book of stories set in Montreal walk-ups.

Spontaneity always gets the glory. Forget that. Simultaneity is where it's at. As though all at once, Lance Blomgren peers into lives being lived beyond the doors in walk-up apartment buildings across Montreal. These are actual addresses in the city that the author occupies with stories, told in shifting voices and with varying points of view. Even in his afterword, Blomgren doesn't come right out to say how or how well he knew these people whose lives he "documented and dramatized." Maybe he doesn't know some of them at all. Blomgren maintains that kind of guessing game throughout Walkups. (Think about your own life: even as you see when and how your neighbours come and go, how often a certain light goes on, or a cat goes out, you think you know something of their life through this method of observation, but you probably don't. So, you tell yourself a story.) He returns to one site frequently, the "Apt. d'Amours." That said, are the other stories intended to camouflage these ones? Are these the real stories? In one "Apt. d'Amours" story, Blomgren asks "Whose stories are these?" An apt question, a cool book.

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