a sun for the dying by Jean Claude Izzo

Jean Claude Izzo -A sun for the dying

I got this from local library as part of their translated fiction month .A great find it turned out to be .Izzo was primarily a thriller write ,but this book is something completely different more a keen to an updating of down and out in paris by Orwell .The novel follows Rico a down and out ,as the book opens we find him in Paris with his good friend Titi ,who dies of exposure on the station .This leads Rico to decide to leave the cold north of france and head to Marseilles where he grew up .Along the way Rico bumps in to numerous characters a african security guard who helps him out by staying on a building site .a Bosnian hooker who he befriends ,an argument with a french ticket collector and police .till he arrives in Marseilles  you find out why he left .Izzo has brought french life warts and all to life .It seems as thou its the immigrants that help Rico along the way rather than the french .The book was Izzo last as he died in 2000 the book was published in 1999 in france and 2008 in english.The book is wonderfully translated from the french by Howard Curtis .

Rico reckoned Titi must have been a teacher , a professor something like that .he d read lots of books and was always referring to them in conversations .one afternoon they were sitting on a bench in the sun ,on square des Batigonolles – one of their favourite meeting places – and Titi said you know , when I was a teenager , i read a lot of Burroughs ,Ferlinghetti and Kerouac …

Rico and Titi

March 2010
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