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Novel cover of 'Albatross' by Terry Fallis

By Terry Fallis


Published May 2019


From two-time Leacock Medal winner Terry Fallis comes a funny and smart new novel about destiny—and what it means to forge your own path.

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“Fallis writes from another time, when Wodehouse and Leacock and Twain roamed the earth. May he never become extinct.”

— Linwood Barclay, New York Times bestselling author of A Noise Downstairs

“Book lovers rejoice and buy this book! In Albatross, Terry Fallis has found the antidote for what ails our sorry world. May millions of you benefit!”

— Alan Bradley, internationally bestselling author of The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie.

“It’s hard not to get excited about a new Terry Fallis novel, and it is equally hard not to fall in love with Adam Coryell, the big-hearted, sarcastic, fountain-pen-obsessed hero of Albatross, a young golf prodigy who just wants to write short stories. In his inimitable style, Fallis has crafted a tender, funny, and compulsively readable novel about what it means to stay true to your dreams, and to yourself. Do yourself a favour and pick up this book–you won’t put it down again until the final page has been turned.”

— Amy Jones, nationally bestselling author of We’re All in This Together

“This novel has a fable-like quality and philosophical depths that Fallis plumbs with a deceptive subtlety — you’ll come for the story about an athletic whiz kid, and leave contemplating where true happiness really lies, both in Adam’s life and your own.”

— Globe and Mail

“Exhilarating new novel.”

— Calgary Herald, Montreal Gazette, Vancouver Sun

“Despite moments of loss and heartbreak, Fallis coats every page with unexpected hilarity—often juxtaposed with the inevitable plaintiveness of life. He imbues Albatross with an accessible ease, which brings a lightness to Adam’s struggle.”

— The Literary Review of Canada

Adam Coryell is your average high-school student—well, except for that obsession with fountain pens—when his life changes forever. Based on a study by a quirky Swedish professor that claims that every human being, regardless of athletic inclination, has a body that is suited to excel in at least one sport, it turns out that Adam is good—very good, in fact—at golf. Even though he’d never even picked up a golf club. Almost instantly, and with his coach, hard-nosed Bobbie Davenport by his side, Adam and his new-found talent skyrocket to a prodigy-level stardom that includes tournament titles, sponsorship deals, throngs of fans following his every move, and fodder for tabloids. But here’s the catch: Adam doesn’t really like golf. And as the life he once knew slips away—including the love of his life, the dream of being a writer, and everyday normalcy—he can’t help but wonder if all this success and fame is worth it . . . or if it’s enough for him. Heartwarming and funny, sweeping and entertaining, Terry Fallis’s new book takes readers on a journey of self-discovery.

Open book, page preview of 'Albatross' by Terry Fallis

WOULD YOU MIND if I measured your extremities?”

It wasn’t the first thing she said to us, but it was within the first hour after we’d met. We were in the phys ed classroom that opened onto the gym. It was my senior year in high school in Toronto, long before I became what I was to become. But it started right there in that classroom, the first morning of the first day of my final fall term.

My homeroom teacher was new to the school. She was dressed in blue track pants, white Nikes, and a white short-sleeved golf shirt with the words Ladies’ Golf Club of Toronto embroidered just south of her left shoulder. A whistle hung from a lanyard around her neck. She was just a clipboard shy of the complete collegiate-coach stereotype. As we filed into our all-boys phys ed class and found desks, she stood at the front, leaning against the blackboard and watching us with a bemused but warm smile. I’m not being unkind when I say you could see she was a woman, but it took more than a glance. Her grey hair was cut like mine—shortish with a side part. I’d say she was in her mid- to late fifties, and she was very solidly built. If she played rugby—and if she didn’t, she should have—she’d have anchored the scrum.

About Terry Fallis

Photo of Terry Fallis outdoors, greyscale

A two-time winner of the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour, Terry Fallis is the award-winning author of nine national bestsellers, including his most recent, A New Season (2023), all published by McClelland & Stewart (M&S).

Terry has written for many publications including Maclean’s, Canadian Geographic, Reader’s Digest, Toronto Life, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, and the Toronto Star.

Terry lives in Toronto and can be reached at tfallis@gmail.com.