August 2, 2021

eight novels to thrill all summer long


Every year since 2005, the Quais du thriller festival in Lyon has shown all the richness of a major genre. The opportunity to fill your suitcase with black novels, detective stories and other thrillers a few days before the summer holidays.

THRILLER. “You don’t have to dream”, by Pascale Dietrich

Sleepiness – talking while sleeping – refers to a mild sleep disorder. Especially since due to the brevity and irregularity of its episodes, it bothers the bed partner or partner less than continuous snoring. However, he worries Louise. Cries, insults in Spanish… She does not recognize her companion, a gentle man exercising the profession of midwife, who, when he wakes up, remembers nothing. In order to see more clearly, she has the recordings of her nocturnal tirades translated. No doubt: Carlos utters death threats and delivers snippets of the story of an assassination in which he would once have been involved in Marbella. Louise decides to go and investigate this tourist destination. She soon discovers that Carlos, mysterious about his past, is related to a clan of powerful Andalusian traffickers. “The conversation continued in French on trivial subjects, such as breastfeeding, real estate investments or the crisis of vocations among professional killers. “ Pascale Dietrich renews the novel of the underworld with the comic collision of two worlds. Macha Séry

NOIR. « Blackwood », de Michael Farris Smith

Back to square one. Such is the fate of many protagonists of the American Michael Farris Smith. Cornered by misery or eaten away by guilt, they are stricken with immobility in a country, however vast, where the inhabitants are supposed to be able to reinvent themselves. In his fourth novel translated into French, the ghost in Red Bluff (Mississippi) is called Colburn, a metal sculptor. He grew up there. His father committed suicide there, which no one here has forgotten. Even if the city is dying, the shops have closed and the kudzu, a kind of invasive virginia creeper, the omnipresence of which gives Gothic accents to this southern drama, threatens to bury everything. Three other arrivals make people talk: a family of marginalized people living on plunder and begging. When two children go missing, along with the owner of the only bar in town, the valley plunges into violence. Like his illustrious predecessor William Faulkner (1897-1962), Michael Farris Smith is the novelist of the quarter-world in the heart of Mississippi and of lives marred by the ghosts of the past. M. S.

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