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Roman fantastique Verified Purchase. I don't think it's been translated into English yet I read it in French but I am sure it will soon - most of his other thrillers have been translated into many languages. This one's typical Grange: out there, weird, shocking, but lacking something. The story is about two cops more exactly one cop and one ex-cop who, when trying to solve the mystery surrounding a few shocking murders, discover a colony on the French territory, a State within the State where children are tortured to study their voice and screams, with the aim of creating the perfect weapon Killing with the human voice.
The plot isn't bad, you are dragged into the story and kept wondering where it will lead to. I found, however, that there were too many holes in the story - the ending for example is totally unsatisfying: very easy, not credible and disappointing. But Grange's tour-de-force in this novel is to create two main characters whom it is very hard to like; these cops have all the problems you could think of, and more; their lives have been destroyed in many ways; they are far from perfect, but without any redeeming features; they are rude, racist, homophobic and pathetic.
I'm sorry, I may be old-fashioned but I need some connection with the main characters to enjoy a novel. There is also something that left me wondering in the first part of the book: the protagonists' homophobia is so strong - the choice of vocabulary for a start - that I couldn't help wonder if it was theirs of Grange's.
To tell the truth I felt very uneasy about it and it irked me. Last, Grange's writing lacks subtlety. Two examples: his use of similes is often wrong. I have no doubt that he has learned his lesson well and that he tries to use similes to add colour and texture to his writing, but alas, they often don't work because he uses them in the wrong context. He sometimes uses positive comparisons in dark contexts and vice-versa. Were it to create some kind of effect, I would have no problem with it, but I am pretty sure this is not the case here.
Some of the similes are even so out of context that they attract attention to themselves and affect the reading. The second big problem with his writing, from my point of view, is the excessive use of short sentences without subject; in fact, these sentences are often just one word.
On page for example, he writes my translation : "Universal Key. Safety perimeter. Entered the music chamber. Locked the blinds and turned the lights on. I had read other novels by Grange before, but this one's put me off for a while. Regarding the use of short sentences, as stated in the above review, I would like to say that it is not a flaw, on the contrary, it can be seen as a transposition on paper of the chaos habiting the characters' minds.
James Ellroy uses that same trick read WHITE JAZZ for instance and the effect is striking - you have no time to breathe, thrown as you are into the action as if it were a hurricane of words going all places, creating a whirlpool of emotions, fear, chaos and disruption. Very upsetting and mesmerizing I mean, sometimes, it leads you into a trance, as if you had been hypnotised. What matters seems to be the action in movement, not the conclusion of the action itself.
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Miserere by Jean Christophe Grange
Would you like to tell us about a lower price? If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Et assez d'ombre pour les contenter. Alexis Brocas, Le Figaro Magazine. Read more Read less. No customer reviews. How does Amazon calculate star ratings?