by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent, translated by Ros Swartz (Mantle) ISBN 978-1-4472-7646-3
What a delightful, funny and strange little tale this is! The Reader On The 6.27 is the story of a lonely man, Guylain Vignolles, who hates his job as the operator of a book-pulping machine (a monster of note) from where he 'rescues' random pages to read aloud on his train commute.
When he finds a memory stick containing the diary of a mysterious 'Julie', he begins a quest that brings meaning to his life and to many along the way. It has a cast of quirky characters - from a security guard who only speaks in Alexandrine quatrains, to a goldfish called Rouget the Fifth (actually the replacement for Rouget the second, third & 4th), some crazy old ladies, and the resident cleaner of a public loo.
It’s about the power of words, writing and stories to change even the most dire of circumstances, the magic of imagination and those small moments of rebellion that define us. It’s so unusual and immensely satisfying. The film rights have been sold to the biggest independent movie producers in France – so do read it before the hype takes over.
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