Our February Favorites

Over the past month, we’ve read the acclaimed new novels by Nicolas Mathieu (Connemara, Actes Sud), Constance Debré (Nom, Flammarion), and Attica Locke (Au paradis je demeure, Liana Lévi)—and we can confirm that they are as good as everyone is saying.

We’ve also been taken by two books of and about photography, with Julien Gester’s debut Cette fin du monde nous aura tout de même donné de beaux couchers de soleil (with two texts by Jakuta Alikavazovic, 48 vues Actes Sud) and Célia Houdart delightful Journée particulière (P.O.L.).

Reading List

Connemara by Nicolas Mathieu

Connemara is a painfully accurate account of what the passing of time does to our dreams, to our loves, to us. As in Chekhov’s plays, the past works within the present, and the dramas in the worlds of Hélène and Christophe are not brought to a point of resolution, they just pass, and life goes on. Read more.

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Journée particulière by Célia Houdart

Why did Avedon–known neither for his kindness nor his generosity–grace Alain Fonteray with a double portrait (Alain Fonteray-Raphaëlle Gitlis /Richard Avedon-Nicole Wisniack) ? Journée particulière is the story about this mirrored photograph and mysterious encounter, as told by Fonteray’s friend and neighbor, Célia Houdart. Read more.

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This beautiful, hand-sewn booklet stands out as much by its format as by its subject matter. It brings together 48 untitled and undated photographs in sets of two, landscape format, and taken from all over the world over multiple years. Two texts by Jakuta Alikavazovic open and close the book: the first one is told in French through a woman’s voice, while the latter is told in English from a man’s perspective. Read more.

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Au paradis je demeure by Attica Locke

Subtlety and complexity should be Attica Locke’s middle names. Au Paradis je demeure (Heaven, My Home), her new novel just out in France (Liana Lévi, trans. by Anna Rabinovitch), is a follow-up to Bluebird, Bluebird, and if you haven’t read the previous one, don’t worry—Attica will fill you in in no time. Read more.

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After almost two decades of working in publishing, and a few round trips between Paris and New York, Miriam has decided to settle down at Albertine to do what she enjoys most: recommending books she loves. Somehow this also includes taking bizarre pictures for Albertine's social media outlets.
Other recommendations by Miriam Bridenne