"Murray is the best kind of literary biographer" – The Financial Times.
For more information about the books of Nicholas Murray
click HERE and access his website
Winner of the 2015 Basil Bunting Award for poetry

Monday, 8 November 2010

Echenoz Completes His Trilogy

In complete contrast to the noise that surrounds the productions of Michel Houellebecq (see below) the French writer Jean Echenoz, whose books appear without any fanfare or author information or marketing blurb, between the austere white covers of Les Éditions de Minuit, has produced, over the last six years three short, beautifully written and observed biographical novels.  The first, Ravel, in 2006, the second, Courir, in 2008 on the legendary Czech runner Emil Zatopek, and now the third, Des Éclairs, on the inventor Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) have given me a lot of understated pleasure.

Echenoz is drawn to these solitary, strange, obsessive characters in what his publishers call "fiction sans scrupules biographiques" and he recounts the story of Tesla, here called Gregor, with economy, dry wit, and a nice sense of period flavour (early 20th century New York).  Exquisite.

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