Art

10 books to read during the quarantine

Now, when most of us are kept indoors, is an excellent opportunity to distance ourselves from the panic, swap screens for paper and (re)discover our library aside. We offer 10 books to dive into during the quarantine.
Reading time 10 minutes

At home, an odyssey of the domestic space of Mona Chollet (2015)

Although its release dates back five years, Mona Chollet's essay could not be better in terms of the current period of isolation. More than a way to pass the time, At Home is a real guide to learn to feel good about their home, be it a huge villa or even a Parisian 20m2. Through this book, Mona Chollet clears the eternal homebody and awakens the need to have space for oneself. Decompress, find yourself with yourself... Home is ultimately, and more than ever today, a way to protect yourself. "I wondered why it was so accepted, why do we assume that it necessarily bored, that so few resources," she told the Inrockuptibles, In 2015. With this survival manual containment, that which presents itself as "a vigilante in Swedish felt slippers" we discover the joys of staying cooped up at home. On March 15, Mona Chollet has also shared good news on Twitter: At home is now available free on the website Areas Publishing.

Laetitia Colombani's braid (2017)

3 women, 3 stories, 3 continents and yet, several things link them to each other. Could it be this desire to succeed or to escape their conditions? Or this strength of character? Laetitia Colombani tells a vibrant story of these women who oppose everything. Giulia lives in Italy. After the death of her father, she tried at all costs to save her business. A plan that will be turned upside down when she meets Kamal. The man will help the young woman to push her father's business beyond the Italian borders. Smita was born in India and is part of the lowest caste in the country, that of the untouchables. Because of her trying condition, she dreams of a different life for her daughter and will do everything to change her tragic destiny dictated by Indian society. Finally, Sarah is a neat looking Canadian woman. For many, she seems to have it all: a prosperous career, children, a big house. But her life changes when she learns that she has cancer.

The man who wanted to live his life by Douglas Kennedy (1997)

In the eyes of American society, Ben Bradford is a successful man. Prestigious lawyer, residing in a spacious house in the heart of a peaceful suburb, married to a refined woman, and has a newly arrived infant ... He should be proud. However, this is not the life he had dreamed of. As a child, the pressure imposed by his parents hampered his artistic ambitions. Frustrated, Ben Bradford ends up committing the irreparable. In this psychological thriller, Douglas Kennedy takes up one of his flagship themes: how a single moment can turn a life upside down. Against the backdrop of an American dream and a criticism of the materialist lifestyle, the author throws us into the story of a businessman in his skin who would have liked to become a professional photographer. With his second novel, Douglas Kennedy instilled in his readers an inexplicable fascination for life on the run. In 2010, Romain Duris played the role of Ben Bradford in the adaptation of the eponymous novel produced by Eric Lartigau. "It's the film of my dreams," said the author at the time.

The scum of the days by Boris Vian (1947)

Need the unreal to escape reality? In these times of confinement and uncertainty, the dream can sometimes seem more reassuring than reality. So comfort yourself by enjoying reading a classic: The scum of days. The story will take you on a journey into a dreamlike world where nothing has any meaning except the sure love between two beings: Colin and Chloé. Boris Vian wrote this story for his wife in 1947, two years after the end of the Second World War. The foam days tells the story of couple Colin and his friends through trials described in this absurd universe straight out of the imagination of the author, we know him well. Colin, madly in love with his wife Chloé tries to save her because she has a fragile health. Indeed, she has a "water lily" in the lung. And here we go again for a slow descent into hell where tenderness mixes with despair and dreamlike. Boris Vian paints a colorful and fantastic picture for us while counting the current and timeless history of several couples. He rightly explains how illness can affect a love that remains eternal but difficult to live with on a daily basis.

Nostalgia Friends, a phenomenon for 25 years by Kelsey Miller (2019)

What if, rather than watching Friends for the hundredth time, you learn a little more about the most popular sitcom of the 90s? In this book, the fervent followers of the Central Perk troupe will have something to enjoy. While a special episode bringing together the six flagship actors is currently in preparation, here is the opportunity to learn about the series that has fascinated crowds for 25 years, generation after generation. Through comments, unpublished interviews and anecdotes from the actors, Kelsey Miller explores the hidden sides of the legendary New York show. Over 356 pages, the American journalist transmits her love for Friends through the meticulous analysis of the themes addressed throughout the episodes, and thus anchors the series a little more in the reality of the present. From gay marriage to the attacks of September 11, 2001, via the GPA, this fabulous retrospective opens our eyes to a series that we thought we knew about at our fingertips.

Call me by your name by André Aciman (2007)

This novel by André Aciman immerses you in a love story of the 80s between two men. Elio is only 17 years old, and lives in an Italy where dolce vita and desire are at their peak. The young man, described as an introvert, spends his time playing music and reading novels that fuel his emerging desire. Very cultivated for his age, he quickly attracted the attention of Oliver, a professor of philosophy. Freshly graduated from university, he is invited to stay in their home during the summer. The two men are looking for each other ... Elio takes interest in the neighboring Mariza but in a second time discovers an irrevocable desire for Oliver. After an ephemeral idyll, the two characters meet again 15 years later and discover that their feelings have changed ... In 2017, the novel by André Aciman was adapted to the cinema by Luca Guadagnino. The film available on Netflix features Timothée Chalamet in the role of Elio and Armie Hammer in that of Oliver. A vibrant and human love story that will touch and entertain you during this period of confinement.

The portrait of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wild (1890)

What if you could stay young and beautiful forever? This is the choice made by Dorian Gray, a young London dandy. Of rare beauty, he climbs the social ladder and surrounds himself with two men, the painter Basil Hallward and Lord Henry. The artist captivated by the beauty of the young man decides to make a portrait of the latter and to offer him. Quickly, Dorian will envy the eternal beauty of the painting given to him by his friend. He then made a pact with the devil in order to keep his appearance: "If it was I who always had to stay young, and if this painting could age! For that, for that I would give everything! There is nothing in the world that I would not give ... My soul, even! " Following this contract, the fate of the protagonist will be transfigured. A life of debauchery awaits him, associated with twists and turns that will modify the revealing picture of the character's soul. A classic, which in this time of health crisis, allows an introspection of selfish desires to the ephemeral character of humanity.

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert (2006)

“I was an unhappy married woman, I did not like my body and everyone was watching for a pregnancy that I did not want. I divorced, sold my business and I left for a world tour, "Elizabeth Gilbert told Elle. This is how at 31, she left the dream life in which she did not recognize herself: a caring husband, a charming house and a promising career ... By traveling the world, Elizabeth Gilbert learned to to build itself, without any barrier or convention. In this book, the author underlines the capacity of women to face hardships, claims the importance of thinking about oneself, and above all encourages to try a maximum of experiences. To dare is his mantra. Adapted in 2010 to the big screen, with the sparkling Julia Roberts in the leading role, the novel by Elizabeth Gilbert has met with great success in the United States and around the world. A remarkable lesson of happiness, to consume without moderation!

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (1813)

What could be better than reassuring oneself by reading this marvellous love story! Pride and Prejudice is probably one of the best known romances in British literature. Written in the early 19th century by Jane Austen, the writer portrays, behind the sentimental adventures of the five Bennet girls, the narrow vision of English society at the time. A well-crafted story, endearing characters and timeless writing, make this masterpiece a book still current today. The title Pride and Prejudice seems to refer to the two things that governed the lives of English people at the time: marriage and money, which have been discussed throughout history. This book adapted for the big screen in 2005 by Joe Wright with Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfadyen is available on Netflix. So don't wait any longer, embark on this highly emotional and rebounding novel.

I had to dream too hard of Michel Bussi (2019)

Combining love romance and thriller, therein lies the genius of Michel Bussi. “I wanted to bring together two forms of literary emotions that rarely intersect in the same novel: the melancholic romanticism of a passionate love story, and the addiction of a thrilling plot, with its share of inexplicable events, crimes and manipulation to be elucidated," he explains. Something to keep us going. In this story that is both overwhelming and totally gripping, the writer with eight million copies sold transports us into the life of a flight attendant. Married and a 53-year-old mother, Nathy almost failed to see her life devastated by a brief love passion that had arisen twenty years earlier. In his book, Michel Bussi immerses us in the heart of a game of mirrors between 1999 and 2019, between the four stopovers of Montreal, San Diego, Barcelona and Jakarta. Strange coincidences come to disturb Nathy's mind, as if this unforgettable episode of her life is gradually re-emerging. Finally, maybe the most beautiful love stories never die ...

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