Novels read.

Michaël Samyn, June 16, 2012

I had already read a few novels by Marguerite Duras long before even thinking of creating something like Bientôt l’été. It was my philosophy teacher in art school who introduced me to her work. My friends and I adored it and devoured it, even in Dutch translation.

For Bientôt l’été specifically, I have read a dozen or so books. The text in the game (270 separate phrases at the moment) comes from these novels.

To read these books in their original language was one of my main reasons for going back to school to (re-)learn French last year and the year before. The spoken text in the game will be in French. But for the written text, a choice of translations will also be offered (English and Dutch so far).

Marguerite Duras is a very celebrated, if somewhat controversial, author in France. Yet, outside of France, her fame is mostly limited to Jean-Jacques Annaud’s 1992 film The Lover, which the writer disliked so much that she re-wrote the story of the novel that the film was based on and switched publishers when her publisher didn’t want to release a new book with the same story.

In an attempt to familiarize you, dear readers, a bit with the subject matter (and style) of Bientôt l’été, in a next few blog posts I will discuss the different books that I have read for this project, try to explain their stories and attempt to evoke a sense of the spell they cast on me.

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