By Patrick Warner
Double Talk tells the story of Violet Budd and Brian (Baby) Power, two characters fleeingfrom their past. Brian is ambling after an immigrant’s dream, and Violet is desperate to ditchher middle class origins for something more earthy and bohemian. Their contrary social andgeographical ... Read more
Double Talk tells the story of Violet Budd and Brian (Baby) Power, two characters fleeingfrom their past. Brian is ambling after an immigrant’s dream, and Violet is desperate to ditchher middle class origins for something more earthy and bohemian. Their contrary social andgeographical flight paths intersect in St. John’s, Newfoundland in the early 1980s, where, for atime, they find love, sex, and a safe haven in each other. No happy-ever-after story, Double Talk follows Violet and Brian over a fourteen-year period,starting at the end instead of the beginning, as the ordinary pressures of life bring to the surfacethe many differences that exist between them. Double Talk is a coming-of-age novel, a love storyand an examination of social class and its mysterious codes.
"It moves. It's a page turner. "
— Joan Sullivan, the Telegram
“double talk is a haunting and heart-bruising tale of searching out love only to shred it on the sharp edge of human failing. With an unmatched gift for description and exceptional insight, Warner writes about people in a way that makes you run to the mirror and take a long, hard look. ”
— Leslie Vryenhoek, author of Scrabble Lessons
"All in all an interesting, if not wholly satisfying, read. "
— Denise Flint, Downhome
"I'm glad someone has finally written a story about the grimey late 80s in downtown St. John's. The book is a brilliant examination of a doomed relationship. "
— Angela Antle, On the Line Magazine
"In this often racy story which spares us little in the way of detail, Warner crafts a satisfying first novel - simultaneously funny and sad, and, at times, wrenching. Highly recommended. "
— Darrell Squires, the Wester Star
"The book's cover is a fitting harbinger of the doom to follow [. ..] Warner does not disappoint. "
— Sharon Hunt, the Chronicle Herald
"The Newfoundland banter is spot on, as is the domestic tension that hangs like St. John's fog. "
— Mike Landry, Telegraph-Journal
"While at times dark and brooding, double talk is also hilarious, and expertly told with a fistful of hardy writing that is sleek, precise and altogether sexy. "
— Kerri Cull, The Book Fridge
“Whether he’s dealing with the shadow of a mosquito or a journey through the shadow of the valley of death, Warner never skimps on the compassionate intelligence a writer owes his subjects. And then there’s the humour, great lashings of it. ”
— Susan Rendell, author of In the Chambers of the Sea
Near the end of Double Talk, Brian ‘Baby’ Power laments to himself,“Ohsweet mercy, was life ever just one thing at one time?”Since Double Talk is“a love story in reverse”by this point in the novel we’ve just spent 200 pageslearning that love, like life, is never one thing at one time. Already author of three poetry collections, Double Talk is Patrick Warner’sfirst novel. Beginning with a domestic abuse incident, Warner alternateschapters from Violet to Brian’s memories of their relationship. The Newfoundland banter is spot on, as is the domestic tension thathangs like St. John’s fog. Warner ably reveals Violet’s character to explainhow the relationship-ending abuse happened. But Brian, perhaps becauselike Warner moved from Ireland to the island only to find disappointment,is less disclosed
— Mike Laundry, Telegraph-Journal
"Throughout the novel, Warner’s use of dark humour and aphoristic insights pair well with the universality [of] this story, and spares it from being maudlin, and also renders it distinct from similar stories. "
— Salty Ink
“double talk walks the double walk, as Warner masterfully and compassionately dissects the relationship of Violet and Brian. double talk begins at the end, ends in the middle, and keeps you engrossed throughout – a tour de force of the novelist’s art. ”
— Larry Mathews, author of The Artificial Newfoundlander
“double talk is more than a simple he-said/she-said account of a doomed marriage. It’s an exhilarating (and sometimes terrifying) look at the murky complexities that lie under the surface of all relationships. ”
— Michael Crummey, author of Galore, River Thieves, and The Wreckage