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The Ashes Ball – Gilles Paris :: FROGGY’S DELIGHT :: Music, Cinema, Theatre, Books, Exhibitions, sessions and much more.

The new work of Gilles Paris has just been published and we had on Froggy’s Delight the immense pleasure of being able to talk to him for two hours about this book. The ball of ashes is superb, like its cover, it offers us an exquisite moment of reading in the company of many characters in a unique place that the author took care to frequent for long periods of time to write to us about it.

The book therefore takes place on the island of Stromboli, a volcanic island in southern Italy that the book gives us a terrible desire to discover. The story brings together for a summer a very large number of characters (tourists, islanders) who will see their lives take unexpected paths, when the still active volcano wakes up.

One might think that the characters are too numerous, that the work will lose fluidity, but that is not the case. The characters proposed by Gilles Paris are superbly worked, they all have their place in the book and show no superficiality. Obviously, some take up more space than others in the story, this is the case of Giulia, a young teenager, daughter of the manager of a hotel, the Strongyle, whose mother died at birth. There is also Guillaume, the father, a former DRM (General Directorate of Intelligence). But also Mathéo, his partner, who was already working with him at the DRM.

There is also Anton and Sevda, a couple with a brilliant surgeon (not always very loyal) who works in conflict zones. There is also Lior, an oceanologist who has lived on the island for a long time, Ethel and Sebastien, brother and sister from Uruguay who had a complicated childhood. And what about Elena, this Italian countess, deprived of her legs following a fall and widowed, of the sublime Abigale, superb American who came to join her lover, married to another woman. And then, among the many other characters of the novel is also Tom, the superb idea of ​​the novel, a young child who never separates from Gris, whom he is the only one to see with his sister and his brother.

Everyone will learn to know each other, to appreciate each other or to love each other until the eruption of the volcano which will seal everyone’s fate, revealing secrets, things left unsaid but also big surprises. Not everyone came to the island for the same reasons. Some want to forget a painful past while others aspire to start a new life. Others have memories they would like to relive and some see the opportunity and the place to live an extra-marital relationship.

The work is distinguished by a particularly relevant construction. The choral novel, which we are used to seeing for thrillers, is completely mastered. The short chapters, no more than three pages per chapter, give a real rhythm to the reading, which makes it very difficult to abandon the book when it is in our hands. The story, or rather the stories are superb, the author showing a remarkable imagination and a talent for telling us incredible stories.

The author takes care to provide us with geographical references in his work, taking us to Turkey, Palermo, Bordeaux and Uruguay. He also gives us a few pleasant cultural references, from the film Stromboli from Rossellini to Meg Ryan passing through a long South American poem, considered a masterpiece of Spanish literature which retraces the destiny of the Indians.

The book also allows us to think about the theme of abandonment, very present in the characters proposed, whether that of a companion, a husband, a mother or a wife. We also learn things about volcanism, about DRM too, proving the great research work provided by Gille Paris to write this book. You never get bored for a single second in the company of Gilles Paris.

The Ashes Ball is an excellent book, a devourable book, superbly written, which makes you want to visit the island of Stromboli and see this active volcano.

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