Set in early-18th-century France, Thomas: A Secret Life is the imagined life of Thomas Pichon. We first meet Thomas as a twelve-year old in the small town of Vire, Normandy. Precociously sensuous by nature, Thomas is inclined to poetry and religious/erotic imaginings. A series of adolescent adventures provide striking background to his character.
Rejecting parental insistence that he become a priest, Thomas steals away to Paris in the middle of the night. There, nearly broke, Thomas works as a lowly office clerk, joins the ranks of aspiring French writers and makes extra money serving as a part-time spy for the police of Paris. But his careers advance too slowly for his liking, and he finds himself taking regular comfort and release in prostitutes’ stalls. A rendezvous with a high-class courtesan brings a new possibility and Thomas plots a future in which he can have his cake and eat it too.
About the Author
A.J.B. (John) Johnston is the author or co-author of thirteen books on different aspects of the history of Atlantic Canada and over 100 articles in scholarly journals, magazines and newspapers. The Canadian Historical Association awarded a Clio prize to his Endgame 1758: The Promise, the Glory and the Despair of Louisbourg’s Last Decade. John was made a chevalier of France’s Ordre des Palmes académiques in recognition of his many publications on the history of the French in Atlantic Canada. His first novel, Thomas, A Secret Life, was published in 2012. He lives in Halifax with his wife Mary. For more information, please go to www.ajbjohnston.com.