Book review: The Years

The Years

The Years
by Annie Ernaux
Translated by
Alison L. Strayer
Seven Stories Press

Originally published as Les années
in 2008!
Genre: Nonfiction. Autobiography
237 pages


I already mentioned that The Man Booker International 2019 Shadow Panel made me discover a French author unknown to me. I’m very happy to present another one today. I had heard about Annie Ernaux, but had never read The Years, nor anything by her. It’s sad that in all my studies in France, I was not exposed to contemporary authors like her (she was born in 1940), even though she won a lot of literary awards.
And this is so good! Hang on, this is going to be a long review, but hopefully, you will jump on the book right after reading my prose!

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Discover Michel Bussi

I had not done any video for a while, so I thought this format would be great to make you discover this amazing French author of thrillers.
The video is in English and refers to the English translation of his books.
So come with me and


I asked a couple of questions in the comment section of the video on Youtube. I’m curious about your answers.

After I made this video, I also listened to N’oublier jamais – the English translation, Never Forget, will be release on Feb 14, 2019.
The book was smartly put together, with several plots and a cold case reopened for investigation. The end was totally unexpected, as usual with Bussi. I also liked the change of narrators. The main one, Jamal, addresses the reader, trying to convince you of his innocence. Is he the easy scapegoat here? A handicapped man with an Arab name and skin color, and working with mentally handicapped kids? Is he really innocent, and really was trying to help this young lady who ended up jumping the cliff to her death?

Book review: The Great and the Good


The Great and the Good

I rejoiced at the possibility of reading Michel Déon, a very famous and popular French author, not even remembering if I had read him in French decades ago. He passed away at the age of 97, just as I was starting to read The Great and the Good, his latest book translated into English!

The book (which has no numbered chapters) comprises an inclusion, the first and last pages of the book pertaining to the situation of the French main hero, Arthur, when the author writes his novel. In between, we have his story, mostly what happened to him around 20 years earlier.
In 1955, as he was 22, he went to the US on board The Queen Mary to study commercial law in an American university, on a Fulbright scholarship. Not unlike the author himself – you can watch this great interview, in English, about his own experience and his book.

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