This year’s Goncourt Prize, it is a magnificent novel about impossible love, the fragility of art and second chances, through the story of a sculptor and his friendship with the heiress of a rich family from northern Italy, against a backdrop of the rise of fascism in the interwar period. A writing of poetic musicality with undeniable charm, which succeeds in seducing over more than 500 pages.

Of all the novels by this English writer, this one is undoubtedly the most ambitious. He recounts the trajectory of a family of “ordinary people”, inspired by his own, over a period of 75 years, through the prism of events which marked British history. A touching novel, between humor and tenderness, where politics, patriotism and family quarrels mingle.

Neither a novel nor a factual essay, both a personal story and a mixture of reflections peppered with literary references, this book which won the Femina Prize, among others, was born from the incest to which the author was a victim during part of her childhood. We read it for the finesse of her questions, as she wonders about this thin line that separates good from evil and tries to elucidate the horror she experienced.

Deliberately cynical, ironically grating, this novel is written in the form of a diary where, for a year, a fifty-year-old Spaniard confides in his life, his disappointed ambitions, his failed marriage and his conflicting relationships with his family before taking the decision to end his existence. A story imbued with irresistible black humor, which transports us to post-Franco Spain.

Unquestionably one of our favorite titles this year, this punchy novel is told from the mouth of an orphan who finds himself imprisoned in a penal colony, off the coast of Brittany, where he will be beaten and humiliated. , crushed, until the day when, against all expectations, the possibility of an escape presents itself. A read that will appeal to those who loved Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead.

Where is the line between innocence and guilt? And most importantly, how can you prove your innocence when everyone has already decided your guilt? These are some of the questions that the author asks herself in recounting the poignant – and true – story of a teacher who is reproached for her kindness towards a student, at a time when any gesture of affection can become suspect, she writes.

Each of the Icelandic writer’s books is a collector’s item in itself, into which we want to dive again at any time to seek a little light, poetry and comfort. In it, its heroine sets out to save her little corner of the planet and its language, one tree and one word at a time.

The Scottish-born author, discovered with Shuggie Bain, continues to immerse us in the Glasgow where he grew up with this impossible love story between two teenagers, one Protestant and the other Catholic. An author whose next titles we impatiently await, who knows how to describe the violence of the time and the poor neighborhoods of his hometown with stories that go straight to the heart.

Written as a thriller, this latest novel by the American author is much more than a thriller with a backdrop of murder and revenge. It is a foray into the history of Boston and the American Northeast in the midst of social upheaval, at that time in the 1970s which saw desegregation measures transform the city and its old Irish neighborhoods.

In Virginia, the land of Confederate flags, a homosexual and interracial couple is murdered in cold blood. The fathers of the young men, with whom they had conflicting relationships, decide to carry out their own investigation when that of the police stalls. A story of redemption, fatherhood and forgiveness, that we read for the atmosphere, for the characters and for this side of the United States that we don’t hear enough about. A great discovery and an African-American author to follow.