Non-fiction society, politics, economy





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LITERARY REPORTAGE

Piazza, Antoine: VOYAGE AU JAPON


(Le Rouergue, January 2010, 156 pages)

February 2007. Osaka. Antoine Piazza has decided to go cycling all around Shikoku, the smallest and less known island among the archipelago. Two saddlebags and his bike are all he is carrying with him. A hill country, in winter, barely adapted to bikes, means coping with material issues, as well as with physical exhaustion. Yet, those difficulties happen to be the footbridges leading him to precious and revealing encounters. This journey, where chances are scattered all along his trek, is mostly a personal reflexion, an intimate exploration. The settings provide him the best conditions to try to think about his life, to remember his previous cycling adventures and thus giving them a new meaning, to observe with meticulous refound sensation of walking in Osaka, his last stage before heading back to France. Freed from his bike, discovering the country without the mechanical pedalling action, he enriches his quest, inspired by future travel plans in Japan.

Antoine Piazza, in this seeming travel book, melts with success physical and psychological exploration, putting them together subtly with his precise and poetic style. This unique narrative offers us his train of thought as well as a description of Japan with a fresh eye. A true gem.

Born in 1957, Antoine Piazza is currently teaching in Sète. voyage au japon is his fifth book. He has already published roman fleuve (1999), mougaburu (2001), les ronces (2006) and, la route de tassiga (2008).

Antoine Piazza confirme ses talents d’observateur. Parfois cruel, toujours juste, il ouvre les portes d’un Japon méconnu, ancestral, à la culture “singulière et complexe” Lire

Méticuleuse, Presque obsessionnelle, parfois volontairement désincarnée pour conjurer l’émotion facile et le cliché touristique, l’écriture d’Antoine Piazza recèle une puissante poésie.” Télérama

Cet étonnant voyage est bien sûr un récit sur un magnifique pays étroit et pentu, mais c’est aussi et surtout un voyage au bout de soi, à la recherché de soi, une quête intérieure, douloureuse, salvatrice.” Le Magazine Littéraire

Cliff, William: USA 1976


(La Table Ronde, January 2010, 178 pages)

A young man takes the plane for the first time in his life and embarks on an “ audacious trip”without taboos or stereotypes. Allowing himself to be guided only by instinct and encounters, he strolls through New York, Boston, San Francisco… Vast spaces and unending staircases fascinate him, a smile or a light arouse his enthusiasm…

Since 1973, William Cliff has published a dozen of poetry and prose books, as well as translations. L’Académie française awarded him with its Grand Prix de Poésie in 2007. His last collection of poetry, Épopées, has been published at La Table Ronde in 2008.

Lumière, frayeurs, vrombissements, pétillement de l’esprit, amour des grands espaces et des beaux jeunes hommes sans cesse travaillés par de nouveaux départs, USA 1976 est tout cela et bien davantage.” Le Jeudi

(…) une approche remarquable de ce que fut le “rêve américain”. L’Humanité

Poète aux semelles de vent, (…) Cliff déconcerte par cette indifférence en même temps qu’il attache par une fascinante ingénuité.” La Libre Belgique

William Cliff s’appuie sur le décalage qui marque son personnage pour nous renvoyer à nos certitudes et les bousculer légèrement, avec une délicatesse rusée.” Pages à pages

Forestier, Patrick: PIRATES ET COMMANDOS


(Le Rocher, February 2010, 320 pages)

Both a report of investigation and a travel-story, this book reveals us the modern piracy offshore the coast of Somalia.15,000 ships are sailing through Aden Golf and Suez Canal,where oil and commercial wares are on the way to Europe. And presently these ships become the preys for sea-piracy.

The author describes the secrets of the "commando-units" during the liberation of 3 sailing ships and their French prisoners. A breathtaking story for readers....

Frey, Philippe: CARAVANES


(JC Lattès, April 2010, 220 pages)

Toubons, Touaregs, Maures, Arabs… Desert tribes are probably the most ancient social groups of the world. Caravans crisscrossed the Sahara desert even before the pharaohs of Egypt. At that time, the main cargo was Sudanese natron, a product used for embalming the dead. Then it was dates, wheat flour, sugar and tea, transported by camelback to isolated desert camps and villages. Philippe Frey has accompanied a dozen modern caravans, a tradition still very much alive that functions in much the same way as it has for centuries. The author has learned the secrets of this ancient tradition: how they navigate with neither compass nor watch, why they never lose their leader, how they protect themselves from the blazing heat, and how they find water. In this book, he shares his fascinating travels, rich in human discovery and esthetic imagery.

Philippe Frey holds a doctorate in ethnology and is passionate about travel. He has crossed all the largest deserts of the five continents and has become a specialist of the dry lands and their inhabitants. He has written numerous works, among which, Nomade blanc (Laffont, 1992) and 50° Déserts brûlants (Lattès, 2007).

Rolin, Jean: JOURNAL DE GAND AUX ALÉOUTIENNES


(La Table Ronde, April 2010, 168 pages)

Based on a crossing that Jean Rolin made in 1980, joural de gand aux aloutiennes recounts a crazy imaginary trip from Belgium to a chain of desert islands between Alaska and Kamtchatka, via Norway, Africa and Brazil. On board the Meistersinger, the captain smokes opium; sailors pass the time throwing fresh cement at each other; a strange and rubbery animal called pil-pil serves to anticipate rollings. Although undesirable on the cargo ship, the narrator will achieve his extravagant adventure and arrive at the foot of the volcano Sisquk, in other words “ the mountain that shows me the way when I am lost »…

Rolin, Jean: LA LIGNE DE FRONT


(La Table Ronde, April 2010, 218 pages)

In 1987, Jean Rolin goes to Southern Africa and strides along the “ line”of countries united against apartheid. With a keen sense of self-derision, he paints himself as a highly ironic and rather confused traveller who observes events without joining in them. Some of his encounters enrich him: Robert, a revolutionary at the end of his tether, expatriate in Zanzibar ; the farmers Ned and Joan, shut in behind their railings ; the “ semi-divine”Indian prostitute from Durban who he would love to rescue. Others, such as “ Carabosse envuitonnée” who shows up at the Victoria Falls, make his blood boil. There are also the landscapes that delight him: the insane green of a tea plantation, the urban chaos, the wild animals’ breath in the african night…

Born in 1949, Jean Rolin spends his childhood between Brittany and Senegal. A journalist for Libération, Le Monde, Le Figaro, Géo, he is also the author of about twenty works among which Zones (Gallimard, 1995), L’Organisation (Gallimard, Prix Médicis 1996), La Clôture (POL, 2002), Chrétiens (POL, 2003), L’Explosion de la durite (POL, 2007) et Un chien mort après lui (POL, 2009).
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