The Red Notebook In a Rose-Colored World

Title:  The Red Notebook Author:  Antoine Laurain Translator:  Emily Boyce & Jane Aitken Publisher:  Gallic Books, London (2015) ISBN:  978 19083 1 3867 Antoine Laurain writes perfectly pleasant novels. And his latest, The Red Notebook, sticks to that amiable formula which seems to have brought him some success in the past. The President’s Hat was the story of a man who mistakenly switches hats with French President … Continue reading The Red Notebook In a Rose-Colored World

Women Writing About Horrible Things – Two French Novellas (a #WITMonth post)

Le Necrophile (The Necrophiliac in English) by Gabrielle Wittkop, translated by Don Bapst and Beside the Sea by Véronique Olmi, translated by Adriana Hunter, are unflinching character studies – depicting mankind in its darkest moments and (as is the case of Le Necrophile) at its most depraved. Continue reading Women Writing About Horrible Things – Two French Novellas (a #WITMonth post)

The Conductor & Other Tales by Jean Ferry (translated from the French by Edward Gauvin)

Some interests spring fully formed from within, sending us off on a mission to gather information.  I find that my obsessions more often evolve. I find myself returning to the same subject at completely random intervals, unintentionally or even unknowingly, until a gradual immersion occurs over time.  In this way I began reading Sartre in high school because I was (and remain) obsessed with pandemic literature – of which The Plague … Continue reading The Conductor & Other Tales by Jean Ferry (translated from the French by Edward Gauvin)

The Map and the Territory by Michel Houellebacq, translated from the original French by Gavin Bowd

It’s easy to see why Michel Houellebecq inspires strong emotions.  It takes a special kind of arrogance to write yourself into your own novel as a central character.  And then there’s the annoying idiosyncracies – the politically incorrect rants he seems to revel in, his love of obscure bits of information or penchant for italics (which implies an insulting lack of faith in his readers … Continue reading The Map and the Territory by Michel Houellebacq, translated from the original French by Gavin Bowd