Isabelle's Reviews > Trois Jours chez ma mère

Trois Jours chez ma mère by François Weyergans
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Jan 05, 2008

it was ok
bookshelves: french
Read in January, 2008

I am totally perplexed by this book. I had never read anything by Francois Weyergans, a writer-movie maker associated with the "nouvelle vague", winner of all kinds of prizes and accolades. So, here I go....
On the plus side: Very subtle premise: first peron narrative about a novelist struggling with writing a novel about a novelist struggling with writing a novel about a novelist etc.... This is very richly done, with humor in the variations from one repetition to the next.
Weyergans is also a very erudite man who manages to share his culture with style and enough self-deprecation to make it interesting (as opposed to pontificating).
Throughout the book, he builds a whole web about women, sometimes in the most abject way, and I was not sure what this was about until the very end of the book, maybe the last 20 pages, which is when we get to his mother, the real heroine of the novel. The book is actually very tragic, and it e snded up ringing particularly true to me (my mother has actually had a very similar stroke last summer, with similar clinical consequences and even similar medicines!).
On the down side: although the end of the book clearly explains why he wrote those pages, he sometimes objectified women in such a way that I hated the book: no intellectual reasoning could make me overcome this basic repulsion.

The novel is probably much too sublte and smart for me, with those contrasts of indifference, love, scorn masquerading as one another...
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