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Des Hommes - The Cost of Denying the Past

This is my review of  Des Hommes by Laurent Mauvignier.

Of all the novels on the fraught topic of the struggle for Algerian independence from France, this is unusual in its focus on the trauma of young men sent out to fight a colonial war without understanding the situation into which they were thrown and unprepared for the violence they were about to witness and perpetrate. 503 more words


Book 2 - A Very Long Engagement, by Sebastien Japrisot

Book 2 – A Very Long Engagement, by Sebastien Japrisot, translated by Linda Coverdale

I’ll admit it. This sat in my to-read pile for a long time. 244 more words


Le Petit Piment

This is my review of  “Le Petit Piment” by Alain Mabanckou .

What at first seems like memories of a childhood spent in a Congolese orphanage gradually becomes more surreal, proving by the end to be a kind of fable. 385 more words

French Fiction

Le Premier Homme

This is my review of  “Le Premier Homme” by Albert Camus .

When forty-year-old Jacques visits his father’s grave, he is taken aback by the realisation that he was only twenty-nine, far younger than his son is now, when killed in the First World War. 718 more words


Le Grand Meaulnes - Caught between dream and reality

This is a review of “Le Grand Meaulnes” by Alain-Fournier

Some of the cult status of this classic must stem from the poignancy of the author’s death at the outset of the First World War, aged only twenty-seven. 450 more words


Hopefulness in Homelessness

‘Miss Bertignac, I don’t see your name on the list of presentations.’

Christmas is a time for love, forgiveness and giving. It is a time for putting aside any selfishness and a time for thinking of others as well as thinking of those less fortunate than ourselves.

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Book Review

The Portrait by Antoine Laurain

I’ve written about two of Antoine Laurain‘s other novels here at bookconscious: The Red Notebook and The President’s Hat.  Like those books, The Portrait… 310 more words