The five books in competition for the 2017 Prix de la Ville de Deauville. The winner will be known on April 8 during the Festival.


Zazou- Albin Michel editions

We are not serious when we are fifteen - even in the middle of the Occupation. Every day, at the Eva cafe, a band of zazous meet to listen to jazz. Josette, Pierre and Jean are high school students, Sarah is a hairdresser, Charlie trumpeter, Marie dancer, Lucienne apprentice model. In a gloomy Paris, they apply the zazous slogans to the letter: dancing the swing, drinking grenadine beer, reading prohibited books, wearing sunglasses in all circumstances and putting on long plaid jackets.
As the Germans show their true faces, these young people who do not yet bear the name of adolescents cover the walls of Paris with the “V” of victory, cause panic in cinemas and theaters, wreath on November 11 under the Arc de Triomphe, sport, by solidarity and provocation, the yellow star. Hunted by the Nazis, chased by collaborators, rejected by the Resistance, the zazous do not want so much to "change their lives" as to prevent their youth from being confiscated.
In this broad novel with musical accents, Gérard de Cortanze immerses us in the heart of a true social fact too often overlooked, in the daily life of a Paris at war as we had never seen it before, and makes us discover the twirling soundtrack that, from Trenet to Django Reinhardt, saved a generation from fear.


Libertango - Actes Sud editions

Luis was born in 1935. Of Spanish origin, he lives in Paris with his parents and sisters. Luis is handicapped, his left side works poorly, his gait is hesitant, his diction often difficult.
In this family ulcerated by the presence of a damaged child, Luis is not carried by any tutelary trust. With his ear glued to the transistor, he escapes, grows up listening, discovering the embrace of the arpeggios, the beauty of concertos, cantatas and symphonies, and each partition gradually becomes his territory of knowledge.
At twenty-one, alone on the banks of the Seine, Luis is suddenly overwhelmed by the sound of a bandoneon. Her life opens in the future.
“I was born on the purest proposition of the universe, he will say later: that of the love of music.”
Libertango is the most enchanting novel by Frédérique Deghelt. A joyful book that generates and invokes the emotion of beauty, that emotion that music finds in each of us, even at the worst of war. An emotion that carries Luis and saves him.


Learn to live underwater - Christian Bourgois editions

"There was a concert in Metz with guest soloist Isaac Stern. I was overjoyed, I felt boundless admiration for him. At the end of the concert, when dozens of people came to congratulate him, I literally pulled him by the tail-tail, he didn't pay much attention to me. "What do you want, boy?" "He said all the same in his sublime French tinged with Russian, English and Yiddish, the local chief let him know:" Yes, he is young, but he already plays the violin well, you know. "
"Master, could I someday play something for you?" I would so much like to play something with you. "
After a hesitation:
"Give me your phone number - we'll see."
I thought it was over, and that he had no intention of calling me. A few days later, we were at the table in Metz for the family lunch. The phone is ringing. "Hello, this is Isaac Stern. If I had been told that God had just called, I would not have found it more incredible. "


First snow on Pondicherry - Zulma editions

A virtuoso violinist, keen on klezmer music as much as on the classical repertoire, Hochéa Meintzel accepts the invitation of a carnatic music festival in Chennai, in South India. Wounded in his flesh by an attack, it is with the intention of never coming back that he leaves Jerusalem.
As if magnetized by the circumstances, after a bumpy equipped which leads him from Pondicherry to the coast of Malabar, passing by a mountain ranch on the borders of Kerala, he finds refuge in Fort Cochin, one evening of storm, within the ancient blue synagogue. Because the great prayer requires a minyan, quorum of ten faithful, those who are still there beg Hochéa to be theirs. With the promise to tell him the ancestral history of the Jews of Kochi…
Carried by the figures of Samra, his adopted daughter, and Mutuswami, the young musician who guides and accompanies him, Hochéa relies on a chain of chances, even if it means facing a hidden part of his life - and the intuition of another world, another history, another exile.
In a romantic tour de force, Première neiges sur Pondichéry immerses us in an extreme sensory universe, exuberant, shocked, heady, through the prism of a man who carries within him all the music of the world, and welcomes the inexorable beauty of all his senses.
"The night this time was whole, full of stars split by veils of mist. And the final bouquet, after the last salvos, fell in scattered snow over the sea. ”


Wanderer- Héloïse d'Ormesson editions

Composer and music master, Hermin lives withdrawn into the confines of Bourbonnais, absorbed by the writing of a Hommage à Schubert. But on a rough January evening, his studious tranquility is interrupted. Her former pupil, Lenny, prodigy pianist, mysteriously knocks on his door. The two men are then confronted with the ghosts of their past - between musical osmosis, blindness and waiting for a revelation.
Carried by a Schubertian melody, Wanderer is a novel of rare delicacy, a twilight adagio in the heart of winter, a subtle ode to German romanticism.


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