Fiction Andre Brink Other Lives

ISBN 13 : 9781402213915

Other Lives

Note moyenne 3,1
( 69 avis fournis par Goodreads )
 
9781402213915: Other Lives

In just one morning, he forgot who he was...

Three provocative and interconnected stories from one of the world's greatest living writers:

A white painter in Africa comes to his studio in the afternoon. On his doorstep, he sees a woman with curly hair and a dark complexion. He has never seen her before, but she embraces him. As he steps past her, two strange children rush to his feet yelling "Daddy!" This family welcomes him home, but he knows none of them.

On the other side of Cape Town, a white man pulls himself out of bed and toward his mirror, where he is confronted by his suddenly black face.

A concert pianist falls passionately in love with the celebrated singer he works beside, but cannot bring himself to touch her, until one night they sit down to eat dinner, and look up to see themselves surrounded by armed men.

In this new novel, Andre Brink is at his best, exploring the fractured yet globalized world where we find ourselves and our lives transformed.

PRAISE FOR ANDRE BRINK

"South African novelist Brink is a master stylist."
Publishers Weekly

"Brink describes calamities and absurdities of the apartheid system with a cold lucidity that in no way interferes with high emotion and daring flights of the imagination."
Mario Vargas Llosa, New York Times Book Review

"One of the most important and prolific voices from South Africa."
Library Journal

"If you want to get the feeling of South Africa, as strongly as Camus gives you the feeling of Algiers, you will turn to André Brink."
Tribune

"Brink writes feelingly of South Africa―the land, the black, the white, the terrible beauty and tragedy that lies therein."
Publishers Weekly

"Brink is a hard-eyed storyteller."
Philadelphia Inquirer

Les informations fournies dans la section « Synopsis » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

About the Author :

Thrice nominated for the Nobel Prize for Literature and twice shortlisted for the Booker Prize, ANDRÉ BRINK is one of South Africa's eminent novelists. He is the author of over 20 works of fiction, many of them written during the years when apartheid dominated the culture of his country. His first openly political novel, Kennis van die Aand became a cause célèbre. It was banned a year after its publication under new censorship laws applied for the first time to an Afrikaans writer. Brink later translated the work into English as Looking on Darkness. A prolific literary critic and dramatist, Brink has worked for over 40 years as an academic and as a translator of works as varied as Mary Poppins and Shakespeare's plays into Afrikaans. André Brink is an outspoken recorder of South Africa's turbulent history from the days of apartheid to the present.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved. :


Excerpt from The Blue Door

1
THERE WAS, FIRST, THE DREAM.WHICH SHOULD have alerted me, except that I'm not normally into dreams. But this one I found strangely disquieting, and carried it with me, like a persistent tune in my head, throughout that long day. Until the shocking moment in the early dusk. The kind of moment that once turned the life of Kafka's Gregor Samsa upside down. But this was not fiction. It happened. And to me.

Not that the dream had any direct bearing on what happened in the evening. But in some subliminal way, and with hindsight, there did seem to be a connection which I have not been able to figure out. Nor, I must confess, have I tried. I believe that dreams belong to the night in which they're dreamt and should preferably not be allowed to spill into the day. This time it was different.

In the dream I am embarking on a long journey with my family, moving house. My wife Lydia is there, but also three children, three little girls, very blonde, with very blue eyes. This is perturbing. We do not have children, and after nine years of marriage it still hurts, although both of us have become skilled at pretending it doesn't matter; not anymore. Lydia gets into the front of the truck with the driver. The girls are already in the back, perched high up on the mountain of furniture like little monkeys. I join them and we drive off very slowly, the load swaying precariously. It is a sweltering day and the children are perspiring profusely, strands of their blonde hair clinging to their cheeks and foreheads.

They seem to have difficulty breathing. Before we have reached the first corner, I realize that we will never make it like this. We need water for the journey for the children to survive. I start hammering with my hands on the cabin of the truck. The driver stops and peers up at me, a surly expression on his thick face which is turning an ominous purple.

"I've got to get water for the kids," I explain. "I left three bottles on the kitchen sink."
"We don't have time," growls the driver.
"I won't be long," I insist. "And they won't survive without water in this heat."

He mutters a reply, mercifully inaudible, and I jump off.

"Just drive on slowly," I try to placate him. "I'll soon catch up with you."
The girls begin to cry, but I give them a reassuring wave as I trot off into the simmering and searing white day.

Only when I arrive at the kitchen door do I realize that I have no keys with me. Glancing round to give another wave to the children, I hurriedly begin to jog around the house to find a means of entry. Only after three exhausting rounds do I spot a half-open window. In the distance, the truck is beginning to disappear in a cloud of dust.

I manage to climb into the house and collect the bottles of water. They are ice cold against my chest. But now the window through which I have entered is barred, and I lose precious time rushing this way and that through the house. Everything seems locked and bolted. I become aware of rising panic inside me.

Then at last, somehow, in the inexplicable manner of dreams, I am outside again, still clutching the water bottles to my chest. By now the truck is nowhere to be seen. Only a small cloud of dust, the size of a man's hand, hangs in the distance.

I start running. In the heat my legs turn to lead. But I persevere. I have to, otherwise my family will be lost: they do not know where we are heading for, I am the only one who knows the address. On and on I run. From time to time I catch a glimpse of the diminishing truck. On, on, on. I have to. I just have to.

In the distance I can hear the thin voices of the children wailing, more and more faintly. Once I believe I can hear Lydia calling:

"David! David, hurry!"

Then that, too, dies away. In the ferocious glare of the day I redouble my efforts. But in the end I am forced to admit that it is useless. I shall never catch up with the truck. I shall never see Lydia and the children again.

That was where the dream ended.

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Andre Brink
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