Raw Milk

Original title: Lait cru

Author: Poutré, Steve

Publication Date:

January 2024



Original language and publisher

French | Editions Alto

Territories Handled

Netherlands, North America, Scandinavia


Debut Novel, Literary Fiction

Raw Milk

Original title: Lait cru

Author: Poutré, Steve


The Quebec farm is neither green nor peaceful; it is haunted. By the missing, the stories of fear, the family taboos and the chicks that died in their shells. Invisible herds reign here crushed by work, by the eternal task of feeding the province.

Among these shadows, a boy goes by, between his timid older brother and his rebellious younger brother. Tormented and whimsical, the middle child walks at the edge of fields and woods, balancing on this fine border which separates reality from floating bodies and nightmares. Until one winter day, he gets wounded. But once hospitalized, the young man continues to walk, looking for what is perhaps not lost.

Raw Milk is a novel of back and forth between a sanitized present in the psychiatric unit and the unpasteurized memories of a farmer’s son, raised to take over a farm where the young males end up sacrificed. A magical, brutal and immensely alive world surges in this text which plunges, like no other before it, into rural malaise, bringing a good dose of Gothic into the frozen picturesqueness of the land.

Steve Poutré’s writing engages the senses and the heart; he digs into commonplaces to unearth skeletons, and into spirits to bring out demons. A gripping first novel, which questions the servitude of humans and animals and the tender and twisted relationship that unites them. A story that can be read in one sitting.