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I found Savage odd and distant:when I finished reading I wished I were sitting with someone who had read and liked this book, so I could get an explanation of what I was missing. I almost liked the frame (which plays nicely with fictional conventions of fiction presenting itself as fact—fitting, this concern with convention in a book concerned with civilization/savageness) more than the rest of the book, though the rest of the book—which explores a Gauguinesque character's peregrinations—h [...]
jacques jouet's savage is a slim work that uses as its inspiration the notable life of french artist paul gauguin. the book begins with a rather humorous and mocking metafictional decree about the book's origins, but shifts easily into a more traditional first-person narrative. paul, rather than a post-impressionist painter, is instead cast as a clothing designer. as he travels the world seeking a market for his wares, and attempting to escape the confines of civilization itself, paul begins to [...]
Library Journal Review:Alluding to Jean-Paul Sartre's famous study of Gustave Flaubert, Jouet's recent book asks, "What, at this point in time, can we make of a man?" As a member of the Oulipo (Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle), a group of French writers and mathematicians who use constrained writing techniques for inspiration, Jouet's literary output is often characterized as avant-garde. This is a work of fiction based upon the life of painter Paul Gauguin. The prose is a first-person strea [...]
I admit I probably don't get it as much as I should - in a literature criticism way. But I really enjoyed reading this, picked up on a whim in the library - who doesn't notice a bright yellow book!It was a very unique insightful read. Quirky, cheeky and fun. All I can say really is that it was beautifully written and thoroughly absorbing. Also intellectually stimulating with it's observations about people, the self and what fashion and artistic thought really means.
A bit more slight than Mountain R, but still fast, funny, and clever. Keep the Jouet coming please, Dalkey Archive!