The Next Seasons
Original title: Les saisons d’après
Impossible to let go of this beautiful novel, which, against a backdrop of family secrets and childhood woes, takes you far away. — Sandrine Bajos, Aujourd’hui en France
A must-read. — Le Parisien
His gallery of portraits is delicious… — Nous Deux
Some secrets cannot stay forever behind memories’ doors.
Just after turning 45, Charlotte, a French literature teacher, lost her husband to a long and painful cancer. This drama triggers something inside her and she decides to change everything and to leave her past behind: she resigns—to the deepest despair of hers parents—she sells her house and applies to a Writer’s Residence Program based at Trébeurden, on the French (wild) West Coast in Brittany. She is not a young writer, so to speak, as she has already published two thrillers, but they did not sell quite well and she lost her faith.
Finally, she is the only one to be taken for nine months to this Residence and she believes that there will be no better opportunity for her to again write a good book. This place is called “Lighthouse” and was created by a best-selling and mysterious author (a mix between Stephen King and Paul Auster), William-Xavier Mizen, known as WXM, his initials. He was THE author her husband kept on reading before dying. This author has disappeared some years ago and lot of stories about his life have been told ever since.
During her stay, Charlotte will meet some colorful characters, settle an amazing movie program for her students, and challenge herself. She will face her fears and push her boundaries by swimming at dawn in the sea everyday, having the feeling of being watched from a distance. And most of all she will investigate WXM’s disappearance, keeping a diary and meeting up with the Story of her life.
Christian Carayon’s writing is very atmospheric ; it conveys specific cinema references together with in depth analysis of characters’ feelings. Readers are behind closed doors with perfect strangers at Lighthouse and at the same time locked in the narrator’s mind and obsessions.
- Rights for the author’s previous novel, A Breath, A Shade sold in Germany, Italy, Spain, and the Netherlands.