Russian novel, in French, translated from Russian, e-book / book
published: February 2008
price france : soft 16 € / hard 18 €
This novel is contemporary and demanding. It is aimed above all at readers keen to discover people who are different from them, readers who still believe that writing, literature and art are invested with a mission.
This short and taut novel is not of a common kind. Out of phase and oneiric, pure and noble, it is a true poem in prose that will satisfy the taste of the finest connoisseur. Through the prism of love stories and love practices of European historical figures, ancient and modern, Valeria Narbikova introduces us to the baroque and mind-boggling daily life of a Russian woman, living in today’s Russia. The heroine discovers love and sexuality while having to face life in an illogical, futuristic world, both run-down and modernized. It is the reader and not Alice who goes through the looking-glass in this novel, carried by the narrator’s artistic, erotic and libertine visions, drawn into an endless sarabande of love scenes from Western European art and a vision that nevertheless remains rooted in reality.
Great literary finesse, a quality seldom attained in such a genre, especially by a Russian author. An unusual work. A poem in prose. A jewel of feminine libertinage.
Valeria Narbikova lives in Moscow and is the author of several novels as well as numerous prosaic and poetic works. Since the Perestroika she belongs to the most celebrated writers of her generation in Russia. Her refined, out-of-phase style is a reference for men of letters. Her books are strikingly fresh, perceptive and bright.
“All in this world converges to a single desire – to bathe. All thirst can be quenched but one, only one, cannot – to bathe… We all take planes: to make war, to go places, to do business. And all these planes carry us aboard because we are dying to bathe. And until the end of times we shall crave and thirst for it – to bathe…”