Sauf que le père, un jour, dit « stop » et s’installe au Nouveau-Mexique, avec une nouvelle compagne, Clara. Quant à Lilia, elle poursuit sa route, car partir c’est la seule chose qu’elle sache faire, c’est son modus vivendi, ce qu’elle a toujours connu. Elle n’a que seize ans, et toujours « on the road », vivotant de petits boulots ici et là, prenant des photos des rues, des parkings, des bâtiments : photographier est bien son seul hobby…
Alors que Lilia est une solitaire, Michaela subit la solitude sans la choisir, sa famille l'a délaissée, mise de côté. Elle survit comme elle peut, dort dans un cagibi de dancing sur un matelas d'enfant, se nourrit de pilules. Michaela est le personnage perdu de ce roman, sans aucune perspective.
Enfin, la façon dont le roman se termine m'a de fait laissée sur ma faim. Je ne vais pas raconter pour ne pas dévoiler.
Morceaux choisis :
Déliquescence des relations familiales dans la famille du détective :
"Once the dinner was laid out on the table, each one less dinner-like than the one before, once Michaela and her father were seated, her mother glanced expectantly from one to the other until they started eating. then she brought out the newspaper and proceeded to ignore both of them.
"Elaine", Christopher said.
"I'm sorry, am I being rude ?" She put the paper down. "How was work, darling?" She was an actress impersonating a wife. (...)
"Very productive", her father said. He no longer recognized this as the life they'd left the circus for, and he felt that there'd been some kind of a bait and switch.
"Good", her mother said, and picked up the paper again.
In the silence after that moment, Michaela tried to eat as quickly as possible, or as little as possible, or both; she wanted to leave the table as fast as she could. Her mother put the paper down.
"But no one asked me about my day!" she said. Don't you want to know what I did?"
"Please" said her father, "not in front of the kid". He didn't look at Michaela, although she stared at his face.
"Well", she said, "never mind, then. It doesn't matter what I did." (pp.151-116)
"Clara in the mornings: she came down the stairs in a bathrobe, yawning, the stairs creaking under her feet. In the kitchen she stood for a moment by the open back door. She lived on the edge of town, and all the backyards on her side of the street opened out into the desert, a landscape of cacti and dry grass and scrubby blue-grey sagebrush that kept going until it met the hazy outlines of the mountains far away. The collapsed wreckage of an ancient fence marked a rectangle behind the house, but the lawn had been overtaken two decades ago before by the desert." (p.190)
Clara had never traveled, and was perfectly serene. She'd lived alone for years in her small desert town and enjoyed her independence, although now her face lit up when Lilia's father entered the room."(p.191)
"The cold was agonizing: he'd never imagined this quality of wind. It was possible to imagine his blood freezing under his skin, and there was ice in his eyelashes. It was eleven P.M. on a Sunday, and Rue Ste-Catherine was all but deserted. Neon signs flickered from behind the barred windows of clubs. Girls Girls Girls. Danseuses nues" (p.226)