|Full text PDF:||http://spectrum.library.concordia.ca/981131/|
'Canada is the essence of not being. Not English, not American, it is the mathematic of not being. And a subtle flavour — we're more like celery as a flavour.' Comedian Mike Myers' summary reflects a contemporary and pervasive pop-culture interpretation of the country, one which this collection of short stories explores. Dinner with the Lynx is a series of stories interconnected by ideas of 'place' in relation to Canadian culture. Setting is a major feature; each story is set in Canada and highlights the localized vernacular and kitsch of its respective city or town. The writing is preoccupied with the Canadian body in its many forms: biological, political, geographic. It fixates on these various iterations, whether explored through a character's body or the body politic of a specific place, as a venue for cultural self-definition. Plotlines play with contemporary hallmarks of Canadiana, from B.C.'s Hastings Street havoc to Saskatchewan's crop circles to the elusive lynx of the Northwest. These stories follow in the footsteps of such Canadian- themed collections as All the Anxious Girls on Earth by ZsuZsi Gartner, Daydreams of Angels by Heather O'Neill, Floating like the Dead by Yasuko Thanh, Hellgoing by Lynn Coady, and Born with a Tooth by Joseph Boyden.