When Gellhorn, a notable poet, begins a university residency in a “dynamic metropolis” and stays at the illustrious Máximo College, he finds himself scandalized, and for little known reason. Scrutiny by his new academic neighbours is the least of his worries, as he learns of the existence of Aaron Schnell, his physical pseudo-twin, and an actor and film “double.”
The Chair shares fragments from the oeuvre of Thomas Claque, a recently deceased author who contrived the tale of the pseudo-twins. The Chair’s scholarship leads him to the real Máximo College, where he revives those characters and scenarios, before travelling to a smaller prairie town where he reimagines one of Claque’s risqué getaways. There he meets a young woman doing her creative thesis on the double in literature.
Petra, a police clerk in an entirely different prairie city, receives a photograph of a missing person and recognizes a passenger from her weekday commute. Non-routine surveillance draws her deeper into his world until a global pandemic abruptly stalls her progress. Her romantic prospect soon leads to a greater mystery punctuated by the words, TULPA MEA CULPA, although its uncanny truth will be ultimately less provocative than serial coverage in the Prairie Pulse.
Tulpa Mea Culpa is a literary tour-de-force and solidifies Morse as one of Canada’s most exciting writers today and proves why he is a two-time Governor General Award nominee.
“Incalculable, engaging, and exhilarating.”– Marina Endicott
“Suddenly we find ourselves inside a Gothic novel, an epistolary romance, a work of picaresque erotica, or a David Lynch film. The effect is surreal and frequently very funny.”– Prairie Books Now
“Garry Thomas Morse’s fiction is a force field of delight and innovation. It’s continually breaking out of its book-born mold and flying off as art, taking you with it.”– M.A.C. Farrant, author of ‘The Strange Truth About Us’, a Globe & Mail Best Book