Don Gillmor’s Mount Pleasant (Random House, 2013)

This is an excerpt from a longer consideration of the work, which can be read at BuriedInPrint.

Mount Pleasant by Don GillmorThe title borrows the name of an impressive cemetery in Toronto which, ironically, is also the name of a street in an upscale neighbourhood in the city; Harry knows both areas well.


The premise of the story is simple: Harry’s father has died and Harry has expected an inheritance. But Harry soon realizes that much of his understanding of the world, of the economy in particular, is out-of-date.


Electronic fortunes rode on minor blips from the yen or the euro, distress signals that rose from Wall Street and zipped through ten million hard drives like tracer bullets and lit the battlefield as thieves crawled away with gold or growth or emerging markets.”


Money isn’t so much about gold and bills, guarded by dragons and hoarded by the likes of Scrooge McDuck, anymore, as it is about virtual currency. But Harry struggles to understand that shift.


“The binary commands sluiced through the world’s exchanges, and some of that money charging through the ether belonged to his father, belonged to Harry. He was sure of it.”


And even harder to accept is the fact that much of what he had assumed to be true about his father’s life and value(s) is now shifting as well. And this, in turn, forces significant shifts in Harry’s own life.