“Match” by Lily Boisvert: stinging portrait of a toxic relationship

Journalist and presenter Lily Boisvert paints an uncompromising portrait of a toxic relationship and its devastating effects in her new novel. match. She narrates very realistically the meeting of a boy and a girl in a dating app. Two adults who like each other. A possible relationship, even if small flags are raised here and there … The further the relationship progresses, the worse it gets, the more control, manipulation and toxicity there is. It is not a beautiful sight. Nor nice to live.

Ilmilie Martin, the heroine of the novel, is a strong woman. She has always known and everyone is quick to remind her if her memory ever fails. One day, she meets a brilliant, caring man who is not afraid to show his weakness. The perfect match? It is rather the beginning of a year and a half of hell.

In this very different novel ANNANhis series fantasy, Lily Boisvert describes the insidious and terribly effective aspects of manipulation. She talks about the mental fatigue that women who speak in public space have to endure. She denounces the horrific troll violence on social media. And it describes the mechanisms that destroy self-confidence and make people accept what should never be accepted.

Price to pay

Her book shows the fragility of relationships, the difficulty of building them, the price to be paid for feminist positions in today’s society.

“I really wanted to talk about the whole idea of ​​a strong woman. It is one of the common themes in history. From a personal point of view it speaks to me a lot because it is something I have heard often. I grew up there. Emilie’s character sees herself as a strong woman and she is told she is a strong woman. “But she somehow becomes a target on the woman’s back,” commented Lili Boisvert, in an interview.

Worst meeting

Ilmilie displays her feminist positions. She does not want to be vulnerable and encounters the worst person she can meet in this context, at a point in her life when she feels she will be overturned.

“He ended up finishing it psychologically. He presents himself as a weak man, as a very vulnerable man who needs precisely empathy. Ilmilie is so confident in her strength that this is exactly what breaks her. She does not see what is coming: she definitely has the impression that it is part of her game. »

Lily Boisvert adds that the strong woman is perceived as a kind of anomaly of the system, which risks “infecting” others.

“We live in an age that tends to over-psychologize these filthy behaviors that should simply be called filthy behaviors. But we psychologize them by saying that it comes from the insecurity, from the vulnerability of the person … “

“There are people who see that because their cruelty can be explained, it is as if it were justified. Because this person is suffering, it’s normal that they want to make someone else suffer … but I do not accept that. »

Familiar topic

Has Lily Boisvert ever experienced a situation like the one she describes, as she presents it so realistically?

“You can say I know this topic. I know this kind of situation. I know what goes through the mind of someone who goes through this. This is what I wanted to show: the complexity of the reflections and the ambiguity of the situations. How can a person be offended every day. »

  • Lili Boisvert is a journalist and host.
  • She published the feminist essay with the editor of VLB The principle of cumshot and the first two volumes ofANNANa fantasy trilogy.


Lili Boisvert

He said I was crazy. That I have not always managed to cause accidents when moving. That I had a bad memory. Bad attitude. That I was in bad faith. That I was talking about saying nothing. That I thought I was funny, but I was not.

When I made a mistake and did not apologize, he said I was not able to do self-criticism. When I realized a mistake, he said, “Worry, inn, stupidity?” »

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