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Honest Lies

Michael Wood: Jean Giono, 27 July 2023

by Jean Giono, translated by Bill Johnston.
Archipelago, 171 pp., £12.99, September 2021, 978 1 953861 12 2
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The Open Road 
by Jean Giono, translated by Paul Eprile.
NYRB, 212 pp., £13.99, October 2021, 978 1 68137 510 6
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A King Alone 
by Jean Giono, translated by Alyson Waters.
NYRB, 155 pp., £14.99, June 2021, 978 1 68137 309 6
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... Pascal: ‘Who is it who said, “A king without diversion is a man full of wretchedness”?’ Alyson Waters’s translation provides a longer passage from Pascal, which gives us a context for the quotation. This is a good move, since the rhetorical question isn’t going to lead all that many English speakers directly to the right place. The fuller ...

Desperado as Commodity

Alex Harvey: Jean-Patrick Manchette, 26 May 2022

The N’Gustro Affair 
by Jean-Patrick Manchette, translated by Donald Nicholson-Smith.
NYRB, 180 pp., £12, September 2021, 978 1 68137 512 0
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No Room at the Morgue 
by Jean-Patrick Manchette, translated by Alyson Waters.
NYRB, 188 pp., £12, August 2020, 978 1 68137 418 5
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... When​ Jean-Patrick Manchette was asked about his first encounter with detective fiction, he mentioned a scene from Black Wings Has My Angel by the American writer Elliott Chaze. Originally published in 1953, this obscure lovers-on-the-run thriller was only available, until recently, in French translation.*She was sitting on the floor, naked, in a skitter of green bills … scooping up handfuls of the green money and dropping it on top of her head so that it came sliding down along the cream-coloured hair, slipping down along her shoulders and body ...

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