Shortlisted for Canada Reads 2024 • One of Tor.com‘s Can’t Miss Speculative Fiction for Fall 2023 • Listed in CBC Books Fiction to Read in Fall 2023 • One of Kirkus Reviews‘ Fall 2023 Big Books By Small Presses • A Kirkus Review Work of Translated Fiction To Read Now • One of CBC Books Best Books of 2023
In an alternate history in which the French never surrendered Detroit, children protect their own kingdom in the trees.
In an alternate history of Detroit, the Motor City was never surrendered to the US. Its residents deal with pollution, poverty, and the legacy of racism—and strange and magical things are happening: children rule over their own kingdom in the trees and burned houses regenerate themselves. When Gloria arrives looking for answers and her missing granddaughters, at first she finds only a hungry mouse in the derelict home where her daughter was murdered. But the neighbours take pity on her and she turns to their resilience and impressive gardens for sustenance.
When a strange intuition sends Gloria into the woods of Parc Rouge, where the city’s orphaned and abandoned children are rumored to have created their own society, she can’t imagine the strength she will find. A richly imagined story of community and a plea for persistence in the face of our uncertain future, The Future is a lyrical testament to the power we hold to protect the people and places we love—together.
Praise for The Future
“At the height of her art, in a profound and teeming language marked by dialogues written in an invented patois, Catherine Leroux also gives us a glimpse of a world where nature flourishes against all odds, where legends are brought to life and where magical realism reigns.”
—La Presse, Montreal
“The novel answers concrete questions: what happens after the end of the world? … Nothing can erase the survivors’ traumatic memories but their hope persists and their present is full of intergenerational support and characters who create new ways of living among the ruins … Catherine Leroux delivers a dazzling and original novel, above all a testament to the humanity and resilience of communities in the margins.”
“This poignant utopia captures how cities have souls, how they live and die, and how they sometimes miraculously rise from the dead. Far from the usual depressing post-apocalyptic novel, The Future is an exhilarating story in which Gloria, who relies on her daily horoscope to guide her, creates a future for her community that is finally able to find wonder after suffering loss.”
—Livres Hebdo, Montreal
“Despite the suffering and horror, despite the precariousness, the novel is full of hope, light and goodness, and offers a vision of intergenerational healing.”
—Le Devoir, Montreal