Jamie Dopp

Driving Lessons

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Jamie Trotter is growing up in Waterloo, Ontario in the 1960s and 1970s. Outwardly he leads an ideal life: he has loving parents, goes to church and school, and plays hockey. When he is ten years old, however, a joke that backfires starts him on an unexpected path to self-discovery. Gradually, his life becomes more complicated. At age seventeen, his first love becomes entangled with doubts about religion and rebellion against his parents, and he is pushed towards a potentially life-altering decision. By turns tragic and wildly funny, Driving Lessons is a Canadian coming-of-age novel in the rich tradition that runs from W. O. Mitchell to Miriam Toews.

To read Driving Lessons is to travel bravely back to childhood, and coming-of-age, and see it all as clearly as if you’d never left. Jamie Dopp’s deft and vivid prose holds a mirror up to how we discover ourselves, negotiating the tender agonies and joys of family, friends, road hockey, not to mention the ultimate showdown between sex and religion. And it’s a book as Canadian as they come, eh?
~ Bill Gaston, author of The Good Body and A Mariner’s Guide to Self-Sabotage

With echoes of Alice Munro’s Lives of Girls and Women, Jamie Dopp’s Driving Lessons immerses us in Jamie Trotter’s coming-of-age with all of the humour and heartbreak entailed in that evolution. I loved this lively, honest, and vivid account of the lives of boys and men. I can’t overstate how much this novel came to life for me. I catch myself thinking back on Jamie Trotter as if he’s an old friend. A truly lovely book.
~ Angie Abdou, author of In Case I Go and Home Ice

Jamie Dopp is a novelist, poet, and musician, as well as a professor of Canadian Literature at the University of Victoria. He won the gritlit Award for fiction for the story “Little Fish” in 2011. Growing up in Waterloo, Ontario gave him an appreciation for how ordinary-seeming places are rich sources for both comedy and tragedy.

Find Jamie Dopp on the web at www.jamiedopp.ca

ISBN 978-1-77171-396-2
276 pages
5.5 x 8.5
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