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Nos richesses by Kaouther Adimi

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Nos richesses by Kaouther Adimi

It is not without some sense of narcissism that I find myself drawn to a novel about a bookstore. However, we are not talking about a normal bookstore here!

Nos richesses
, by Kaouther Adimi, describes the many lives and times of the great and sometimes forgotten publisher Edmond Charlot. For those who do not know his name (and I myself was among that number before reading the book), Edmond Charlot was the Syliva Beach of Algiers: he opened a bookstore called Les vraies richesses and spent a great deal of his life publishing new and under-appreciated authors. One of his first offerings to the world was the debut of none other than Albert Camus.

This story in itself is fascinating, but there is much more to it than that. The bookstore was open between 1930 and 1960; and if you look at those years from the geopolitical stance of Algeria, you can begin to imagine the jaw-dropping breadth of history that this time frame encompasses. Moments of great political gravity float in the background of Nos Richesses, emerging from time to time just to remind the reader of the sheer drama and sometimes horror of the era.

Kaouther Adimi–a young Algerian woman now living in Paris–synthesizes the private minutiae of Charlot with the history of the times in a suprisingly light almost breezy fashion, making this a fast, interesting, and engaging read. This novel is certainly a highlight of the Rentree!

Nos Richesses
, a novel by Kaouther Adimi (Editions du Seuil)

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Nos richesses
By Kaouther Adimi
Pages: 224 Pages
Publisher: SEUIL
Format: Book
Language: French
Dimensions: 206 mm x 141 mm x 20 mm
Publication Date:
17 Août 2017
ISBN-10 : 2021373800
En 1935, Edmond Charlot a vingt ans et il rentre à Alger avec une seule idée en tête, prendre exemple sur Adrienne Monnier et sa librairie parisienne. Charlot le sait, sa vocation est de choisir,... Read more
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