The Uninvited Guest


The Uninvited Guest

By John Degen

Nightwood Editions
5.5 x 8.5 - 234 pages
Paperback - $20.95
May 2006

A literary novel that takes historical liberties with Canada’s national obsession: hockey.

Shortlisted for the 2007 in Canada First Novel Award

"Satisfying and resonant... John Degen has written a very fine book--rarely is an uninvited guest so enjoyable."
- Steven Galloway, The Globe and Mail

"The Uninvited Guest offers a fictional and philosophical lens on a wide range of subjects from the lives of professional hockey players to the keepers of the Cup to Eastern European history to storytelling, and blurs the whole spectrum together in a finale full of love, community and companionship."
- Igor Larionov, three-time winner of the Stanley Cup

Some people win games. Some achieve success. But when it comes right down to it, most people don’t. Failure is a guest no one invites, yet it shows up almost everywhere. The gifts it brings are easy to overlook.

The Uninvited Guest is a whirlwind ride featuring Romanian hockey superstars growing up in Montreal, Danish prostitutes working in Sweden, Russian mobsters, the perils of parking in Penitanguishene, and how not to die if you want to make it home on time.

Most of all, it’s the story of Stan Cooper, hockey timekeeper/custodian-turned-trophy-keeper; Tony, a young Italian Canadian man and new Cup keeper; and Dragos Petrescu, the first Romanian-born hockey player to win the Stanley Cup. Over a period of 50 years, the lives of the three men weave in and out of each other, with themes of love, hate, family, jealousy and ultimately, forgiveness.