On land, in the depths of the French countryside, a line of women, is it heaven or hell? Is it really free, in the campaign? Cécile Coulon is focused on his questions by writing A beast in Paradise, excellent novel where strong women grappling with tradition and modernity. Forces of nature, these courageous women and well rooted are they as free as we might imagine?
Emilia lives in Paradise, a remote farmhouse at the end of a dirt road, in a rural region of france. With the unique resources of his courage and his land, she raises alone his two grandchildren, Blanche and Gabriel, who become orphans.
The seasons pass, the years parade, the children grow up. In adolescence, White knows his first love : Alexander. Their relationship builds slowly. But when they reach adulthood, the conflicts appear inevitable : White wants to stay on the farm, but Alexander wants to leave the city. Their two worlds are shattering.
A beast in Paradise
Guy Saint-Jean Publisher”>
A beast in Paradise
Guy Saint-Jean Éditeur
Cécile Coulon explains in an interview that the main character of this novel is not a person but a place. “This farm, the Paradise, is inspired by a farm that really exists : the farm where was born my grandmother, in a small village of Corrèze. It is a department that is very farm where I spent a lot of time when I was young.”
The location was perfect, evokes it. “It’s a camera, there are limits very marked, it is a quite spot cut off from the world and at the same time, without this place, the outside world can not live, since it delivers power.”
The body of the women
She wanted to address the subject of the body of women in the agricultural environment. “I really need to talk, to describe, to tell this body from 5 years to 85 years. Already, the bodies of women, it is complicated in French literature, but in addition, the body of women in agriculture is invisible. We talk about almost never.”
For her, it was important to do, because she has been raised by women who had these body-there, very strong, very muscular, both very hard and very enveloping. “With the character of Blanche, I wanted to tell a character who never deviates from his line. If I had to summarize the text in one sentence, I would say that it is Antigone, the feet in the dung.”
Until the end
Cécile Coulon adds that White will loose nothing and goes until the end. “It is rare. In reality, we encounter very few people who are like that. It is so difficult… I think that literature is the place where we can allow ourselves to dream, or nightmares, to people like that, who will at the end of their love, at the end of their hate, at the end of their grief.”
The writer of 29 years was born in a rural area, the Auvergne, one of the regions most empty and the most agricultural of France, ” she said. “From the outset, it is very natural for me to live with the volcanoes around me, with the forest, with the lakes. That was really my landscape for 20 years.”
- Cécile Coulon, 29 years old, is the new sensation in the literary community French.
- She has published six novels, including Three seasons of storm, rewarded by the prix des Libraires, and The thorns, collection of poems (prize Apollinaire 2018).
- She is the recipient of the prize of The World for A beast in Paradise