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Fiction Literary

The Fifth

A Love(s) Story

by (author) M.P. Boisvert

translated by Monica Meneghetti

Caitlin Press
Initial publish date
Feb 2021
Literary, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2021
    List Price

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Critically acclaimed in the original French, The Fifth offers a refreshing take on sexuality and desire. Alice, Gayle, Camille and Simon live together in a polyamorous relationship, affectionately referred to as the Family. Camille, a trans woman, and Gayle are lovers; Simon is in a relationship with Alice; and Alice is in a relationship with everyone. But when Alice invites her seemingly straight ex-boyfriend Eloy to move into their Sherbrooke, Quebec apartment—albeit temporarily—the Family's dynamic begins to change in unexpected ways.

Narrated by each Family member along with script-like interludes, the daily lives of Alice, Gayle, Camille, Simon, and Eloy show a loving and satisfying non-traditional relationship. Infused with Quebecois culture, The Fifth is a story rarely represented in Canadian literature. Not about infidelity or possessiveness, rather, it is about the individuals as they navigate love and desire, and punch stereotypes and stigma in the face. Now available for the first time in English from translator and award-winning author Monica Meneghetti, The Fifth is honest, delightfully unconventional, breaks down barriers and challenges norms in our society.

About the authors

M.P. Boisvert's profile page

Monica Meneghetti is a white European settler and child of Italian immigrants, born in the region of Treaty 7 (Calgary, Canada.) Her first book, What the Mouth Wants: A Memoir of Food, Love and Belonging (Dagger Editions) was a Lambda Literary Award finalist and Bi Book Award winner. Edmonton Journal’s Liane Faulder proclaimed it “deeply erotic and decidedly queer”. What the Mouth Wants is included in American Library Association’s Over the Rainbow’s 2018 Recommended Book List; Autostraddle’s 8 Soft Femme Memoirs; CBC Books’ Must-reads of 2017, and 14 Books to Read for Pride. Queer Songbook Orchestra included her Bowie memoir in their Fall 2018 cross-Canada tour. Her essay about being a queer child of immigrants is found in The Globe and Mail. Her work has been anthologized in Absent Mothers (Demeter Press), Sustenance: Writers from BC and Beyond on the Subject of Food (Anvil Press), and Love Me True: Writers Reflect on the Ins, Outs, Ups and Downs of Marriage (Caitlin Press). Her literary translation from Italian, The Call of the Ice: Climbing 8000-meter Peaks in Winter (Mountaineers Books) was a Banff Mountain Book Award finalist. Her poetry, fiction and nonfiction appear in print, online, in musical scores, and on stage. Nominated for Bi Writer of the Year, Monica defines bisexual as loving her own and other genders.

Monica Meneghetti's profile page


  • Short-listed, ReLit Award

Editorial Reviews

“A unique take on polyamory in a Quebecois setting. MP Boisvert—as translated by Monica Meneghetti—beautifully captures how an unknown roommate can turn into an intimate ally, how our insecurities can overwhelm us and that love can be heartbreakingly complex, no matter the number of partners. The Fifth gives us a fly-on-the-wall view of the struggles and depth of what it takes to choose your family and stand by those relationships.”

—Jenny Yuen, author of Polyamorous: Living and Loving More

"The vignettes of The Fifth emanate wit, warmth, and charm—a celebration of queer, polyamorous community and the joyful mess of ordinary life. It's easy to love these characters as much as they love each other."

—Kim Fu, author of The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore

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