“A heartrending and relevant book that move us with the force of its questions, encourages parent-child conversations and reminds us of the urgent need to listen. The surreal, dreamlike illustrations sensitively reflect the seriousness of the subject matter. This ambitious work lets the light shine through with mastery and delicateness. The world’s smallest saviour has yet to come.”
—Peer assessment committee: Julien Chung and Andrée Lévesque-Sioui
Florent, a 10-year-old boy, overhears a conversation between his two moms: given the state of the world, they are wondering if they should have a second child. Through a series of words that are impossible to understand, he gets the hesitation in their voices, the fear in their eyes, the hand one of them places on the other’s belly, just like when he can’t sleep. Florent understands that there are too many human beings on Earth, that people need to stop making babies, that they should’ve stopped way before and that he himself shouldn’t have been born. Will his moms hear his silent cry?
Samuel Larochelle is a novelist, biographer, screenwriter, poet, journalist, speaker and trainer. With a desire to experience the full spectrum of writing, he has published novels for adults (Elias et Justine, À cause des garçons, Parce que tout me ramène à toi) and for teenagers (Lilie trilogy), poetic stories (Combattre la nuit une étoile à la fois, J’ai échappé mon cœur dans ta bouche), biographies, short stories, articles (La Presse, Les Libraires, Collections) and columns (Fugues), as well as hosted the Comme un livre ouvert podcast and produced literary cabarets across Quebec. He lives in Montréal, Quebec.
Eve Patenaude is an author and illustrator. She loves books, the arts, animals, winter, cosy knits and sipping steaming cups of tea while gazing out the window. She has illustrated two books for the Quai no 5 collection at the XYZ publishing house, Papier bulle (2021), written by Simon Boulerice, and Le plus petit sauveur du monde (2022), written by Samuel Larochelle. She spent her childhood in the Montérégie region, her teenage years in Estrie and now splits her time between Montréal and the countryside.
Photo of Samuel Larochelle: Sandra Larochelle
Photo of Eve Patenaude: Julie Artacho