On the death of Paul des Tures, the father of the narrator of Last Cartridge, we know straight away that she was violent: “In his personal effects, given to the beneficiaries, there was only a disposable lighter, a bunch of two car keys, another apartment and a small bag. transparent with its wedding ring and signet ring, covered with coagulated blood. ” Murder, suicide, accident? The first half of the novel leaves the question open, to survey a territory no less shady: the life of Paul des Tures.
Her marriage to Suzanne de Maupertuis, in the 1960s, looks like a hunting trophy: she loves another, but her father, who wants an aristocrat, imposes Paul on her, soon her favorite son-in-law. However, des Tures is unconscious, a liar and willingly tyrannical.
A literary kintsugi
He sets up businesses that go bankrupt, believing that he is sniffing out the big deal where failure awaits it, flares up, endangers the sacrosanct appearances. But his panache, his love for the “easy life” (the expression is taken from a police report following an investigation for bad checks) make him irresistible. It is theatrical, seductive: “Delon in Le Guépard.”
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His sudden death throws his family into impossible mourning. Investigating through the novel on the dispersed life of her father – who leaves in its wake a mistress and a hidden half-brother – the narrator plunges alive into this bath of memories, then goes to meet this unknown brother. Tame the past to repair the present.
In Japan, the art of kintsugi makes it possible to glue the pieces of a broken vase back together using a golden lacquer, sublimating the cracks of the object. Caroline de Bodinat tenderly repairs the image of a failing but sincerely loved father. A literary kintsugi.
Last Cartridge, Caroline de Bodinat, Ed. Stock, 216 pages, 19 euros.