Perfect World

Perfect World

by Ian Colford

May 7, 2016
5.25 x 8, paperback, 192 pages
CDN $19.95 | US $19.95

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Also available as an audiobook: preorder


Finalist for the 2017 Alberta Book Design of the Year Award

Tom Brackett has created the perfect world for himself, despite all odds: he has a good job, a perpetually supportive wife, two kids, a mini-van, and even a golden retriever.

But then, his mental instability causes him to commit a terrifying act of violence.

Tom’s story, which is at once tragic and hopeful, shows how quickly familiar structures can crumble and raises the question of how we can possibly prepare ourselves for the loss of everything we hold dear. It dramatizes a man’s struggle to maintain control over his own life under horrific circumstances. Though offering no solution, its message is a positive one: that the struggle is worth the effort.

“Perfect World is unflinching in its presentation of a mind slowly unraveling. Perceptively charting one man’s lonely struggle against an inexorable foe, Ian Colford captures the stark complexities of mental illness like few others. At times brutal yet always deeply compassionate, Perfect World is a wonder.” —COREY REDEKOP

“A voyage through sickness and the mysteries of the human condition, written with skill
and care. A haunting study in empathy.” —MICHELLE BUTLER HALLETT


Reviews and Interviews

“Ian Colford is the quintessential storyteller… [Perfect World] is an unassuming work of significant artistic and, dare I say, philosophic merit.” The Antigonish Review, 2017.

“[I]t is Colford’s compassion and his ability to identify with his mentally ill protagonist that carries the reader into a similar comprehension of the man’s dilemma.” Robin McGrath, Atlantic Books Today, Winter 2016–17.

“[A] carefully written, sometimes painful tour through one man’s trauma and resilience, his greatest falls and ultimately, his acceptance of a difficult reality. And it is wholly worthy of applause.” Winnipeg Review, July 11, 2016.

Perfect World is a corruscating examination of a mind riven by illness and the traumatic ripple effects that can have on one man and those closest to him. The book’s power resides precisely in its brevity, which provides a focus and an immediacy that is striking and emotionally devastating.” Steven W. Beattie, Quill and Quire, June 2016.