Denis Coupal

March 2019

When financier Paul Carignan is hit by a stray bullet and killed in Beaufort, Quebec, the town leaders are reluctant to investigate. Running out of patience, his teenage sons, Jack and Noah, take justice into their own hands, kidnapping the locals they suspect are responsible. Things soon erupt and the boys find themselves besieged in their house with their captives. In the middle is their mother, Catherine, not sure which side to take. For Tom ‘Brooder’ Doran, Beaufort's Deputy Chief of Police, the investigation has just gotten very complicated. One thing’s for sure, this sleepy town is in for a fiery shakeup.

The French version translated by Joanna Gruda was released in 2021: Coup Fatal

GOLD for the First Fiction 2020 Miramichi Reader Very Best Book Award
FINALIST for the 2020 Crime Writers of Canada Best First Crime Novel

Denis Coupal is a Montreal writer, actor, multi-disciplinary artist and business strategist. His feature-length screenplays have been funded by The FUND (The Foundation to Underwrite New Drama for Pay Television), Roger’s Pay Television, and SODEC. He won Honourable Mention in the 2011 Quebec Writing Competition for his short story “Brand Loyalty,” which was then published in Minority Reports. He is Regional President of the Mergers & Acquisitions Club of Canada and President of the Dawson College Foundation. Blindshot is his first novel. Author website:

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What they say
Blindshot optioned for production!
July 15, 2020: For Immediate Release

Linda Leith Publishing is thrilled to announce the signing of an option agreement with Montreal production company Groupe Entourage for the television adaptation rights to Denis Coupal’s first novel, the thriller Blindshot.  

Finalist for the 2020 Arthur Ellis Award for Crime Fiction as well as The Miramichi Reader Best First Fiction, Blindshot is a tale of murder, small towns, corruption, a grieving family, and rough justice. The deputy police chief of the fictional Eastern Townships village of Beaufort, Quebec, is challenged to maintain the peace when an important resident is found shot dead. The victim’s teenage boys take matters in their own hands, deploying a bold and vengeful scheme that will eventually demand of their mother to either respect the law or join her sons’ dangerous campaign against those they believe are responsible. In Blindshot, the truth remains as elusive as a bullet.

Groupe Entourage intends to develop and produce a dramatic series of 10 one-hour episodes based on the novel, to be broadcast domestically and internationally.

“I am so pleased that a production house of such high calibre as Groupe Entourage will be developing a television series from my novel," says author Denis Coupal. "Blindshot was written with that intent, and making it into a series was part of early discussions with Linda Leith. She believed in the book, for which I am grateful, and now Groupe Entourage are also excited about its potential. Also, none of this would be possible without the strategic guidance of my agent, André Lamarre. I couldn’t be more proud. My role will continue as principal screenwriter of the series, fulfilling yet another dream of writing for television. It really is very exciting.”  

Reached in Montreal today, publisher Linda Leith says, “We are delighted with the Groupe Entourage deal, and congratulate Denis Coupal and agent André Lamarre. We’re confident that Blindshot has the makings of a compelling screen production."
Read the release here.
July 2020

The Denis Coupal Interview
Jim Fisher, Miramichi Reader

Denis Coupal is the author of Blindshot, a thriller set in the Eastern Townships of Quebec. Published by Linda Leith Publishing, it is Denis’ debut novel. Denis was gracious enough to take time from his schedule to talk about Blindshot, writing screenplays, his favourite books and much more!

Miramichi Reader: Tell us about your background, education, employment, etc.
Thank you for this kind invitation to discuss my writing with The Miramichi Reader. It’s a privilege. I am so pleased to have learned that BLINDSHOT has made the 2020 Longlist in “Best First Book” category of The Miramichi Reader’s “The Very Best!” Book Award. Now that’s a thrill!

I’m a lifelong Montrealer, though I did live as a young child in Sept-Îles, for a few years. I went back in recent years, which was a wonderful time of rediscovery. My wife Josée-Lisa, who herself grew up in Matane, and I, drove up the St. Lawrence a few times, always using a slightly different route. These trips were very meaningful to us, and for me in particular, opening my eyes to the profound beauty of Canada’s east and changed my understanding of the world around us. The St. Lawrence River is such an awesome thing. I have an idea for a thriller that takes place from the mouth of the river right down to the Great Lakes. Who knows if one day I will come around to that one.
Read more.
July 2019, The Miramichi Reader

Death, not golf
Marthe Bijman, Seven Circumstances

When I read Denis Coupal’s thriller Blindshot, my overall impression of it was of competence – he had done all the right things, yet, when reading it, I didn’t exactly break out in a sweat. But what he did manage, and this takes some doing, was to make me read it in three hours straight, from 10 pm on page 1, to 1 am the next morning on page 341. I kept wanting to put it down and yet I kept turning over the pages, and then it was one in the morning and I had reached the last page – and then he managed to drop the last line that was a complete surprise. So, what is it that makes his writing unputdownable?
Read more: Seven Circumstances, September 2019

Great review in French press
Ali Dosti, Le Courrier du sud

Le nom Denis Coupal n’est pas connu du grand public. Du moins, pas encore. Pourtant, lors des séances de signatures organisées dans des librairies de la région, l’auteur de Brossard n’a pas de peine à convaincre les clients d’acheter Blindshot, son tout premier roman. Et il semble que les attentes créées soient comblées, alors que le thriller cumule les critiques positives et réactions enthousiastes.

Blindshot – actuellement en anglais mais à paraître en français en 2020 – est né d’un coup de feu. Un coup de feu entendu depuis le bureau de Denis Coupal dans les Cantons-de-L’Est. Un coup, en un bel après-midi. Une balle perdue? Un coup volontaire? se demandait-il.

«Un chasseur, pas trop sportif, tirait de son camion, très près d’une montagne où il y avait une migration de cerfs. Je trouvais ça intéressant… et dangereux.»

Alors se transpose cette idée d’un coup de feu qui atteint le personnage de Paul Carignan, sans que l’on comprenne d’où vient le tir.

«Mais ça, c’est le côté thriller. Le plus important encore, plus humain et pertinent, c’est le côté social de Blindshot», tranche rapidement Denis Coupal.

July 2019, Le Courrier du sud

"An impressive debut novel"
Jim Fisher, The Miramichi Reader

On the cover of Blindshot is the silhouette of a crow, which is significant for, near the beginning of the story, a crow flies into the massive window of Valhalla, the country estate of Paul and Catherine Carignan, located in the Eastern Townships of Quebec. This can be taken as a bad omen, and Catherine quickly finds the injured bird and places it near the woodpile for it to either fly away if better, or die in peace. This is the same woodpile where her estranged husband Paul would later that night be struck by a bullet in his abdomen. ... In his impressive debut novel, Denis Coupal appears to draw on Norse mythology to create some of the most striking aspects of Blindshot.

When a respected publisher like Linda Leith Publishing labels a book as a “thriller” I had high expectations. I have reviewed several of their recent titles and have always been impressed by their high level of exceptional literary content. If you enjoy good mystery-thrillers, then Blindshot should be on your radar. I am adding Blindshot to the 2020 longlist in the “Best First Book” category for “The Very Best!” Book Award.
July 2019, The Miramichi Reader

High praise

"Blindshot is a high-calibre bullet of a book: smart, fast and full of twists. Fans of Linwood Barclay will love this!"
Will Ferguson, The Shoe On The Roof

"This controlled thriller introduces a strong, new voice."
Sheila Kindellan-Sheehan, In the Shadows

“Long live BLINDSHOT!”
Marc Levy, Et si c’était vrai 

“The book is called BLINDSHOT, but Denis Coupal has written a thriller to be read with eyes wide, wide open. An auspicious debut that will keep you guessing.”
Andy Nulman – CEO, Play the Future

“Denis Coupal has hit the bull’s eye with his BLINDSHOT. With a deep sense of place, an appreciation for both the dark and bright side of rural living, and with two young infectious characters, this book is a thrill from opening shock to surprise ending.”
Roy MacGregor, The Globe and Mail

"An accomplished debut with a good ear for dialogue.”
Tommy Schnurmacher – How Vanity Saved My Mother’s Life, Are We On Yet?



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