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Minor Angels

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  215 ratings  ·  35 reviews
From Antoine Volodine comes a deeply disturbing and darkly hilarious novel whose full meaning, its author asserts, will be found not in the book’s pages but in the dreams people will have after reading it. In Minor Angels Volodine depicts a postcataclysmic world in which the forces of capitalism have begun to reestablish themselves. Sharply opposed to such a trend, a group ...more
Hardcover, 166 pages
Published September 1st 2004 by University of Nebraska Press (first published August 25th 1999)
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Vit Babenco
Aug 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Minor Angels is a set of forty-nine interlaced despondent vignettes of murky beauty.
Minor Angels is an exotic alloy of Marcel Schwob, Varlam Shalamov and Andrei Platonov.
“Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets,” all that had already happened long time ago and now everything is taki
May 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tu, di noi due, quale sei?

“Adesso ascoltatemi bene. Non scherzo più. Non si tratta di stabilire se quel racconto è verosimile o no, abilmente evocato o no, surrealista o no, se si inscrive o meno nella tradizione post-esotica, o se è mormorando di paura, arrossendo di indignazione che metto in fila queste frasi, o con tenerezza infinita verso tutto ciò che vive, e se si distingue o no, dietro la mia voce, un'intenzione di lotta radicale contro la realtà o una semplice debolezza schizofrenica di
Nov 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Strangeness is the form taken by beauty when beauty has no hope.

One has to admire the ambition, the pluck, to boldly attempt to create a new genre. Volodine crafted the post-exotic supposedly to engender not the effect of reading the book, but to cultivate or influence the nature of the dreams one has after reading. The framing story concerns the fate of the one who brought back capitalism after the second fall of state communism. The figure in question isn't quite human but rather sentient. he'
Jan 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
Post-exoticism at its finest! So my friend Chad recommended this to me because he became obsessed with Volodine and his created world of madness and...weirdness...recently. And if you know Chad, you know he doesn't obsess lightly, nor does he obsess over things that don't completely rule, so I knew I had to check out Volodine. And I'm glad I did. Because following the trend of reading "dissociative" literature (namely Tavares) and adding a touch of the uncanny and unspeakable, Minor Angels is a ...more
Chad Post
Aug 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was just talking with my girlfriend the other day about just how many post-cataclysmic/apocalyptic dreams I have--it's almost insane. I'm not sure what this really says about me (INSANE? ANXIOUS? ANXIOUSLY INSANE?), but I will say that these dreams are so much like Volodine's writing that I'm afraid he's going to sue me for dream-time copyright infringement.


This collection of 49 "narracts" depicts a post-cataclysmic world in which a group of nearly-immortal grandmothers lead an insurrection
Héctor Genta
Aug 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dopo Gospodinov e Cărtărescu ecco Volodine. Un altro messaggero degli dei mandato a dirci che il romanzo non è morto, ma gode di splendida salute. Un romanzo diverso da quello che abbiamo conosciuto finora, meno chiuso in se stesso e più aperto in tutte le direzioni, un romanzo che mescola reale e visionario, che racconta senza sentire il bisogno di spiegare, che utilizza tutti i registri e le tecniche narrative che ritiene necessarie e magari inserisce nella narrazione note di biologia, scienza ...more
Ariane Brosseau
Alors, dimanche, je vous ai dit: «Je ne saurais vraiment pas quoi en dire là, tout de suite. On s'en reparle dans quelques jours, deal?», donc je dois tenir ma promesse. Même si ce que je voulais en dire ne s'est pas clarifié dans mon esprit.

Avant tout, le titre. Qu'est-ce que ça mange en hiver des «anges mineurs»? Est-ce qu'on parle d'anges qui travaillent dans les mines, ou d'anges qui n'ont pas l'âge légal pour sortir dans les bars? Ni l'un ni l'autre, en fait. C'est le titre poétique d'un ro
Jul 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Des anges mineurs d'Antoine Volodine est un livre de science-fiction étrange. Bien que je l'aie adoré et qu'il figure parmi mes meilleures lectures de 2017, j'ai conscience que cet ouvrage n'est cependant pas pour tout le monde. Ceux qui aiment une intrigue relativement linéaire et avoir des réponses claires n'apprécieront sans doute pas ce livre, puisque ce dernier met en scène l'Apocalypse en se jouant des apories du temps de la fin (c.-à-d., le temps apocalyptique). Il brouille les repères te ...more
Una struttura narrativa particolare, che si rifà al modello dei racconti con una "cornice", ma in un modo tutto suo.
Un'ambientazione post-apocalittica, ma anche questa è particolare, diversa da qualunque altra post-catastrofe sia stata raccontata.
Atmosfere oniriche, ma non manca anche una certa concretezza.
Malinconia e cupezza, ma anche un certo tocco di umorismo.
Quarantanove "capitoli" molto brevi, ed una scrittura elegante, che scorre perfettamente nonostante la stranezza del tutto.

E' il prim
Sep 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jun 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
As it's often the case for the more obscure world-builders, I find it difficult to judge this Volodine book on account of it being my first. Some of its strengths might well have gotten lost in the post-apocalyptic wastelands and uncertain time setting of Minor Angels. Getting the reader lost is definitely one of Volodine's goals here though: the few remnants of humanity left on earth wander somewhat aimlessly, chamanic rituals are performed by three hundred year old grandmothers, a Second Sovie ...more
Feb 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
Comprised of a series of loosely connected moments, Minor Angels holds your attention for one short narr-act and then jumps to another. While I rarely knew what was going on, I was perfectly content in my ignorance. Each chapter is capable of standing on its own and completely enthralled me until I was forced to jump out of it again. I would like to re-read it a few times, in different orders, and try to put things together. But I don't think it's necessary. Although I did not always understand ...more
Svetlana Zakharova
перевод Е. Дмитриевой: плох, много нелепостей, прикрытых "склонностью автора к поэтическим и смысловым неологизмам", но по другим ошибкам видно, что дело не в авторе.
мне очень понравилась легкость автора в обращении с индивидуальностью, кот. у многих сейчас как священная корова.
как он там это называет? постэкзотизм? пусть будет постэкзотизм; поступь его пусть не широка, но увесиста.
надо бы заказать его в переводе, например, на английский, ну или пойти доучить французский, чтобы читать этого cr
Valeria Lattanzio

“Chi ci dirà chi siamo, il giorno in cui non lo sapremo più e il giorno in cui non lo saprà mai nessuno?”

Che cos’è “Angeli minori” di Antoine Volodine? Un libro, certo, ma soprattutto un’esperienza di lettura totalmente rivoluzionaria. Un romanzo (forse) che non può essere paragonato a nessun altro – almeno, a nessun altro autore.

Antoine Volodine, scrittore francese d’origini russe, è uno degli autori più inclassificabili della letteratura contemporanea. Prima di tutto, Volodine è lo pseudonimo
Dec 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Je suis tellement reconnaissante à la personne qui m'a offert ce livre, je l'ai savouré et j'ai déjà envie de le relire, je le conseille à tous les passionnés d'une littérature qui cherche, de mondes construits et déconstruits, d'absurdes et de magies.
Jan 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"[...] la stranezza è la forma che prende il bello quando il bello è disperato."
Piego di Libri
Nov 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Non c’è trama, tutto ha perso senso perché non c’è più neppure il mondo come lo conosciamo...
Simona Friuli
Allucinatorio, Straniante.
"Angeli Minori" è da ragionare. La prima lama con cui ho tentato l'impresa - vivo di dissezioni - è stata quella del confronto con Wilcock e il suo "Stereoscopio": non si tratta di un accostamento arbitrario, o forzoso. Wilcock sceglie, per cantare la misera contemporaneità, la parodia, la dissacrazione; Volodine l'elegia e, più precisamente, una declinazione fantascientifica - più esattamente: distopica - dell'epopea. Entrambi, seppur diversamente, sono tristi cantori
Volodine is absolutely sure of one thing: humanity will end and its decline will leave off survivors who will forget they were ever social, organized, or really that they were humans. He also has a lot of imagination for those survivors: there will be shamans, contemplative and ageless, living on high plateaus, speaking combinations of far-East languages. There will be expeditions through time. People will dream of lovers they've met in previous lives. And a lot of emptiness sprinkled by dust, s ...more
Francesca Lorenzini
Molte volte mentre leggevo ero distratta da voci o pensieri, mentre con questi racconti bisogna stare concentrati perchè sono molto simbolici o metaforici. Però mi ha intrigato. Dovrei leggere qualche romanzo lungo di Volodine.
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a crazy book. It's set after capitalism has fallen, and these magical grandmas make a grandson out of lint, and it's his job to abolish the rest of the capitalists, but he grows up and reestablishes capitalism instead, so they tie him to a post and aim their rifles at him, but they wait around to shoot for a long time, and in the mean time, he tells them one story (well, not a story exactly, Volodine actually calls them 'narracts') a day, and each of these stories is one of the 49 chapte ...more
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Des histoires courtes mais un livre dense, avec des fulgurances poétiques et engagées. Un univers ravagé et dont le sens parfois échappe, des chamanes, des rêveries et des illusions.
J.T. Mahany
Dec 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Now that I have finished this book, I wonder what sorts of shamanic, post-exotic dreams I will experience. It has already influenced my thoughts in strange and esoteric ways.

I wonder if the answer to the problem of other minds can in fact be found in other brains--in the modern rationalist tradition the brain is the seat of consciousness, and so the brain is equivalent effectively to the Self. The chemicals within each being regulate the Self, but are there metaphysical/occult correspondences? W
Dec 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: post-moderne
Un chef d’œuvre d’imagination, de langage, d’humour (très noir), qui montre aussi une structure très travaillée (par exemple les 49 « narrats » sont présentés de façon symétrique, le dernier reprenant des thèmes et des personnages du premier, l’avant-dernier des thèmes du deuxième, etc.)

Le style de Volodine, mélange de poésie désespérée, de politique-fiction parodique et de «littérature-fiction» à la Borgès, mais sans la distance, est unique en son genre.
Mar 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2015
What a magnificent, beautiful, perplexing work. Volodine is a genius. Structurally rich, versatile in his prose but always smooth. Stick with it to Chapter 22 or 23, and things will become more clear, though still so wide open. Finally a post-apocalyptic novel that understands that the apocalypse has already arrived.

A masterpiece.
Mar 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
We Monks and Soldiers is still my favorite... By rights, his work should not be compelling... bolshevism, Shamanism, Tibetian theology, failed revolutions, and humanity in its late terminal phase. And yet, I am totally addicted.
Aug 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
Narracts. 49 of them. Beautiful. Might re-read per the translators instructions, matching narract 1 to 48, 2 to 48 and so on. Tried this with first few and it felt like the book was opening up, a decoded postexotic secret.
Vitaly Ivanov
Sep 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Однажды Платонову приснилось, что он Павич...
Sarah GT
May 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mon livre favori à vie. Étrangeté et imagination.
John Mcchesney-young
Dec 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Very strange but captivating book, beautifully written (or translated). One word of advice: don't give up before you're half-way through because the center chapter helps put it all into context.
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Antoine Volodine is the primary pseudonym of a French author. Some of his books have been published in sf collections, but his style, which he has called "post-exoticism", does not fit neatly into any common genre.

He publishes under several additional pseudonyms, including Lutz Bassmann and Manuela Draeger.
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“Strangeness is the form taken by beauty when beauty has no hope.” 4 likes
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