La plus secrète mémoire des hommes by Mohamed Mbougar Sarr — Winner of This Year’s Prix Goncourt!

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“Je vais te donner un conseil : n’essaie jamais de dire de quoi parle un grand livre. Ou, si tu le fais, voici la seule réponse possible : rien. Un grand livre ne parle jamais que de rien, et pourtant, tout y est.”

[“Let me give you some advice: don’t ever try to say what a great work of literature is about. Or if you do, here’s the only possible answer: nothing. A great work of literature is only ever about nothing, and still it contains everything.”]

Mohamed MBougar Sarr has learned Flaubert’s lesson. While working on Sentimental Education, now commonly designated as the first modern novel, the master claimed that his ambition was to write “a great book about nothing.” And by nothing, one might hear nothing other than itself, with literature as its sole horizon. La plus secrète mémoire des hommes perfectly fits this description. Its story will sound familiar to lovers of canonical texts and novels of initiation. Diégane Latyr Faye, a young Senegalese writer, fascinated by an infamous novel, Le Labyrinthe de l’inhumanité, sets up to unveil what happened to its author, T.C. Elimane, a fellow Senegalese writer in exile in France. Elimane disappeared from the public eye after his only novel took the Parisian literary milieu by storm, before being vilified and accused of plagiarism. The quest for Elimane takes Diégane Latyr Faye on a journey through Africa, Europe and South America, and makes him cross paths with a multitude of narrators whose narratives send him in a labyrinth of his own.

Mbougar Sarr’s talent is mindblowing and enlightens each and every page of this astonishing, multifaceted novel who claims J.L. Borges, Yambo Ouologuem and Roberto Bolano as his sources of inspiration. If the expression “writer of the world” means anything, then Mbougar Sarr is — unarguably– one of its most talented and fierce figures.

La plus secrète mémoire des hommes by Mohamed Mbougar Sarr, Philippe Rey

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Mohamed Mbougar Sarr et “le troisième continent”

Quel est le rapport entre la vie et l’écriture ? La question hante la Plus Secrète Mémoire des hommes de Mohamed Mbougar Sarr, né en 1990 à Dakar. Ses précédents romans traitaient du jihadisme ( Terre ceinte, Présence africaine, 2015), des migrants ( Silence des chœurs, Présence africaine, 2017) et du sujet sensible de l’homosexualité dans son pays ( De purs hommes, Philippe Rey /Jimsaan, 2018).

” La Plus Secrète Mémoire des hommes “, de Mohamed Mbougar Sarr : le feuilleton littéraire de Camille Laurens

Pour inaugurer cette rentrée littéraire, aucun roman ne convient mieux que La Plus Secrète Mémoire des hommes, de Mohamed Mbougar Sarr. A guère plus de 30 ans, cet écrivain, né en 1990 au Sénégal et déjà couronné du prix Ahmadou-Kourouma, signe là son quatrième livre, et sa maîtrise impressionne autant que son refus des concessions.

L’art de Mohamed Mbougar Sarr

En lice pour les prix Goncourt, Médicis, Femina et Renaudot, son nouveau livre “La plus secrète mémoire des hommes” est à la fois l’évènement et la surprise de cette rentrée d’automne. Mohamed Mbougar Sarr est l’invité d’Augustin Trapenard.

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.
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