Chessex, our new Flaubert, has no equal when describing horror without flinching, screaming sotto voce and exploring guilt in taut prose.A" Le Nouvel Observateur A masterpiece. His writing is that of a painter, sober, incisive, bewildering. The beauty of the world, the ubiquity of evil, God's silence, it's all there, delivered like a slap to the face.A" Le Point There are so many books we can do without. But we were waiting for this one. It completes the written universe of a great author and explores a nightmare not as anachronistic as it might appear.A" L'HebdoVom Verlag:
On April 16, 1942, a few days before Hitler's birthday, a handful of Swiss Nazis in Payerne lure Arthur Bloch, a Jewish cattle merchant, into a stable and kill him with an iron bar. Europe is in flames, but this is Switzerland, and Payerne, a rural market town of butchers and bankers, is more concerned with unemployment and local bankruptcies than the fate of nations across the border. Fernand Ischi, leader of the local Nazi cell, blames everything on the Jews and Bloch's murder is to be an example, a foretaste of what is to come once the Nazis take over Switzerland. Jacques Chessex, winner of the prestigious Prix Goncourt, was a child in Payerne. He knew the murderers and sat next to Ischi's children in school. He has written a terse, implacable story that has awakened memories in a country that seems to endlessly rediscover dark areas of its past.
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