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One Ocean, Two Seas, Three Continents (Un océan, deux mers, trois continents)



Original Language: French | 272 pp. | January 2018

2 Seas Represents: Dutch, Nordic, and North American Rights

Long-listed Prix Queffélec – Long-listed Prix SGDL de la fiction – Short-listed Prix Ouest-France / Étonnants Voyageurs 2018 – Short-listed Prix France Bleu / Page des libraires – Short-listed Prix Orange du Livre[

Over 6,000 copies sold


Making a comeback, Wilfried N’sondé writes and speaks for his heroes more than four hundred years later. He has tackled a powerful book, simultaneously an adventure novel, an indictment against slavery, and a denunciation of all fundamentalist establishments. – Jean-Claude Perrier, Livres Hebdo

This novel, One Ocean, Two Seas, Three Continents, is one of those works that give us the lasting impression of being discovered by ourselves, of having had the chance to listen, over the course of the pages, our own humanity. One of those novels we want to tell the world about: “Read it just to hear the murmur of your heart, to reconcile a part of yourself, the humanity that may be sleeping inside of you.” – Sami Tchack, Africultures

A grand adventurous novel resonating with today’s world. – Serge Bressan, Le quotidien du Luxembourg

Diving into this tormented piece, Wilfried N’Sondé marks a vibrant indictment. This one comes to the scene in a passionate way, fighting against all the zealotry, prejudice, and cruelty of yesterday and today. – Marie-Aimée Bonnefoy, La Charente Libre

From one century to another, the mingled voices of the author and his marvelous character call us to reconciliation and courage, in action and in opinion. – Elise Lépine, Transfuge

Wilfried N’Sondé imaginatively recreates the historical figure of the first African ambassador to the Vatican, who died in Rome in 1608, filling in the blanks to tell his little-known life story.

In the early 17th century, Nsaku Ne Vunda, who is ordained a priest and baptized Dom Antonio Manuel, is appointed by the king of the Bakongos as his ambassador to the pope with the mission of opposing the slave trade. As he bids farewell to his native Kongo natal and sets out on his long voyage to Rome, he is unaware that he will first be taken via the New World and that the boat in which he is sailing is, in reality, a slave ship. In a true test of his faith in God and his fellow man, Dom Antonio Manuel experiences an incredible series of adventures and setbacks as he travels from Africa to Brazil and the Caribbean, and finally to Italy via the Iberian peninsula and the Mediterranean. The story of a Congolese Candide exploring the world, Un océan, deux mers, trois continents denounces the horrors of a dark and superstitious age but, rather than descending into bleakness, finds space to exalt beauty and hope.