Mackerel Sky

Overview

From one of Canada’s most original emerging writers comes a novel of criminal intrigue, eccentric love, and powerful women. After a twenty-year absence, a father returns to meet his adult daughter for the first time and is completely unprepared for what he encounters. Guy discovers that his vivacious daughter lives in a bizarre household with her mother, Martine, and Martine’s young lover, Harry. If the intense and unusual relationship of the three housemates isn’t enough, Guy also realizes that they are deeply involved in a counterfeiting operation, producing fake American currency for the black market. Rekindling his relationship with Martine creates friction in the house, and when the counterfeiting operation breaks down, Guy finds himself in a desperate situation as the novel drives towards its climax deep in the criminal underworld. With comparisons to Milan Kundera, Leonard Cohen, and Barbara Gowdy, Natalee Caple brings to this novel her exquisite portrayal of the human psyche and her daring, provocative style.

Mackerel Sky is a dark, thrilling novel about seduction, the intricate, often destructive relationship between parent and child, and the impulses of the heart.

Reviews

...a tightly plotted, fast-moving novel. It hurtles along like a runaway train full of wild characters...and like watching a matinee in a darkened theatre, you find yourself stumbling into the light when it's over.

Vancouver Sun

...a taut, poetic thriller that probes notions of power, sexuality, and morality....a story with not only legs, but bone and sinew, blood, and soul.

Quill & Quire

Breathlessly good.

Washington Post

It is a highly visual novel, with strong characters, fast-paced action, and a Quebec setting not often found in English Canadian fiction. Caple is a clear and muscular writer who is unafraid of the telling detail, who knows an arresting scene when she imagines one.

Canadian Literature

Caple's story brings new life to the common theme of criminal intrigue by imbuing ferociously independent women with the balance of power...Mackerel Sky is an absorbing novel.

Winnipeg Free Press

The pleasure of reading Mackerel Sky comes from experiencing Caple's gift for subverting our expectations of literary sex, gender roles and genre conventions...Caple is a playful poet of the underclass whose damaged characters gradually earn our compassion.

Toronto Star

Scintillating...hyper-erotic, beautiful, and hilariously funny...This entire novel sparks with an erotic, breathless tension that will pull you to the end and leave you wanting more.

Edmonton Journal

The pleasure of reading Mackerel Sky comes from experiencing Caple's gift for subverting our expectations of literary sex, gender roles and genre conventions...Caple is a playful poet of the underclass whose damaged characters gradually earn our compassion.

Toronto Star

Mackerel Sky can be read for the beauty of its language and for the psychological underpinnings of the characters. At the same time, it tells a gripping story, with the threat of violence on every page.

Vancouver Sun

Natalee Caple pushes her story along with vivid imagery and provocative prose.

North Shore News

Caple is at her best when writing of the inherited recklessness that can pass from mother to daughter. Even better when tallying moments of longing...

Globe & Mail

It's a tight, meticulously paced tale of matriarchal crime that builds to a resounding climax.

Citizen’s Weekly

This book is a must-read because it is so different from the realist novels – it shows you how actual reality consists of a wide variety of surreal moments combined with a regular influx of the familiar.

Ottawa Citizen

Mackeral Sky is an unsettling and unforgettable novel, and Caple is indeed a writer to watch for. It is a highly visual novel, with strong characters, fast-paced action, and a Quebec setting not often found in English Canadian fiction. Caple is a clear and muscular writer who is unafraid of telling detail, who knows an arresting scene when she imagines one.

Canadian Literature

Mackeral Sky, propelled by menacing suspense and buoyed upon its honest sensuality, is an unusual and unusually satisfying novel about family. Natalee Caple tells a compelling story of awkward reunions and tragic collisions, all of them fated and necessary.

Andrew Pyper

...a love story unlike any other with heart-thimping suspense and characters to inhabit your dreams.

Linda Spalding

...a brilliant story-teller...

D.M. Thomas

Natalee Caple writes with sensual and captivating detail of people whose dreams drive them to unanticipated extremities. This is a dark, urgent, funny novel.

Catherine Bush

About the Author

Natalee Caple

Posted by admin on December 6, 2014
Natalee Caple photo

Natalee Caple

Natalee Caple is the author of a collection of poetry, A More Tender Ocean, and three books of fiction, The Heart Is Its Own Reason, The Plight of Happy People in an Ordinary World and, most recently, Mackerel Sky. She is also a co-editor of The Notebooks, a 2002 anthology showcasing Canada's rising stars of fiction.