"A sweet coming-of-age story... but Christie goes further, adding to the mix a Hardy Boys-style mystery about bootlegged alcohol, pet wolves that never forget a human scent, and generally shady goings-on in abandoned grain elevators... Compelling." The Globe and Mail
Will has never been Outside, at least not that he can remember. For most of his young life he has lived happily Inside with his mother, Diane, a fiercely loving yet wildly eccentric agoraphobe who drowns in panic at the thought of opening the front door. Then, one day, Will ventures Outside clad in a protective helmet and braces himself for danger. What he finds instead will set him on an unexpected journey of discovery.
Will embraces the Outside and his newfound freedom with enthusiasm, and he eventually befriends Jonah, a quiet Native boy who introduces him to the most reckless and exhilarating activity he's ever seen: skateboarding. Even as Diane's fears intensify, Will finds his own fears fading and his body hardening with each new bruise, scrape, and fall. But life Outside quickly grows complicated, and Diane finds herself grappling with her greatest fear: will she be brave enough to save her son?
Full of dazzling prose and irresistible characters, If I Fall, If I Die is a beautifully tender and unforgettable story.
MICHAEL CHRISTIE's debut book of fiction, The Beggar's Garden, was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, a finalist for the Writers' Trust Prize for Fiction, and won the Vancouver Book Award. Prior to earning an MFA from the University of British Columbia, he was a sponsored skateboarder and travelled throughout the world skateboarding and writing for skateboard magazines. Born in Thunder Bay, he now lives on Galiano Island with his wife and two sons. If I Fall, If I Die is his first novel.
"A sort of Alice in Wonderland in reverse, where a kid from a place where fantasy reigns clambers out of his rabbit hole and emerges, awestruck, into the real world.... [His] journey brings out the wondrous in the mundane, and the emotional adventure of abiding friendship." --Toronto Star
"Beneath the lessons there's a symbolic wondrousness to this book, with its roaming wolves and its characters named Jonah, Titus, Gideon, Icarus. Christie may be mixing his metaphors here, but so what? The truth is that childhood is as deep and lasting as any mythology." --The New York Times