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The Last Life
by Claire MESSUD | Literature & Fiction
Registered by booktwitcher of Chelmsford, Essex United Kingdom on 4/30/2007
Average 6 star rating by BookCrossing Members 

status (set by AnonymousFinder): to be read


6 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by booktwitcher from Chelmsford, Essex United Kingdom on Monday, April 30, 2007

7 out of 10

Pre-numbered label used for registration.
The blurb: Sagesse LaBasse and her family are French Algerian emigrants haunted by their history, brought to the brink of destruction by a single ruthless act.
I found some aspects of this book fascinating and I did feel for the heroine. 


Journal Entry 2 by booktwitcher at Riverside Inn at Victoria Road in Chelmsford, Essex United Kingdom on Monday, April 30, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Released 11 yrs ago (5/1/2007 UTC) at Riverside Inn at Victoria Road in Chelmsford, Essex United Kingdom

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Journal Entry 3 by abitstormyout from Ely, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, May 02, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Caught at the Chelmsford Meet last night. For my TBR pile! 


Journal Entry 4 by abitstormyout at The Purple Dog, Eld Lane OBCZ in Colchester, Essex United Kingdom on Thursday, June 14, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Released 11 yrs ago (6/15/2007 UTC) at The Purple Dog, Eld Lane OBCZ in Colchester, Essex United Kingdom

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Have decided to take this to the Colchester Meet as my Mount TBR is getting a bit overpowering atm! 


Journal Entry 5 by abitstormyout from Ely, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom on Friday, September 21, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Back from Colchester and off to Sudbury! 


Journal Entry 6 by abitstormyout at Caffe Nero in Sudbury, Suffolk United Kingdom on Saturday, September 22, 2007

This book has not been rated.

RELEASE NOTES:

Taking to the Sudbury Meet today. 


Journal Entry 7 by abitstormyout at Caffe Nero IP1 book-crossing zone in Ipswich, Suffolk United Kingdom on Friday, December 07, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Released 10 yrs ago (12/8/2007 UTC) at Caffe Nero IP1 book-crossing zone in Ipswich, Suffolk United Kingdom

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To go to the Ipswich Meet tomorrow! 


Journal Entry 8 by riffraff71 from Benfleet, Essex United Kingdom on Saturday, February 23, 2008

This book has not been rated.

My boyfriend picked this u for me at cafe nero in ipswich after i 'suggested' he stopped there and have a look as he was up that way.I'm going to read it and then release it back into the wild :) 


Journal Entry 9 by riffraff71 from Benfleet, Essex United Kingdom on Wednesday, April 09, 2008

6 out of 10

Not one of my faves but it was ok.
I'm sending this to ETMadrid. 


Journal Entry 10 by ETMadrid from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, April 15, 2008

This book has not been rated.

The book has just flown in from London (I'd not mentioned it to my sister who'd taken delivery of it a couple of days ago, but it got here nonetheless!). I'm really looking forward to reading this. I've read quite a few books about Algeria, and this will probably be the first that is not originally in French. Thank you SO much. It will be interesting to compare to other reads and I'll be reporting here, and ensuring the book continues travelling afterwards. 


Journal Entry 11 by ETMadrid from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, August 05, 2008

7 out of 10

I started to read this at last, whilst in Madrid for the weekend! Two thirds of the way through...

08/08 I finished this last night and over all I did enjoy it. It was utterly believable, a story that rang true from start to finish, impressively so in view of the changing settings, those of France, Algeria and the States. However I did not find it as gripping as the Evening Standard is quoted to have found it (according to the quote on the front cover). I too I suppose would have liked a bit more about life in Algeria, and found this to be essentially a rites-of-passage novel, that reminded me in part of what the similarly-aged Cécile, caught up in her own anxieties, was going through by the French seaside in "Bonjour Tristesse" that I'd just read. I did find it a little annoying that we always knew what was coming round the next corner, as the style is such that we are always told what to expect. Long and drawn out too, the protagonist's reflections. But that said, it was indeed very real, and reflects what many 'pied noir' families and their younger generations go through. I've met two people who told me that their parent(s) were pied noir and initially that meant nothing at all to me. Since then, my awareness and knowledge has grown, but I suppose that this book helps me understand what happened and the difficulties encountered, from varying aspects.

It would seem that anyone who knows Algiers at all, no matter in what context, is utterly mesmerised and enchanted by the near mythical view of the bay. This view becomes almost a protagonist in itself, in so many films that I've seen (through which I first discovered the country, and myself became strangely enchanted). This book is no exception.

I was quite fascinated by a small historical (or legendary) detail that was fleetingly referred to, about a ship carrying nuns to South America being wrecked near Ténès. In the book, it says that the shipwreck resulted in a change in the nuns' vocation, as they married berber men in a nearby village, where there was a shortage of women. I looked for more information and found this. If you can't read the French, do at least listen to the wonderful Algerian rythms of Djamel Laâroussi's song about it.

20/08/08 I'm going to send this to wanderingstar8 as JenKazoo's copy of the book is still on the other side of the Atlantic, and it can carry on as a bookray should there be anyone else interested in it. 


Journal Entry 12 by ETMadrid at Southwark, Greater London United Kingdom on Friday, August 22, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Released 9 yrs ago (8/22/2008 UTC) at Southwark, Greater London United Kingdom

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Only a very slight detour required for me to drop this off at its next destination, on my way back from the South London Gallery. Enjoyed the bustle of East Street on the way back. Hope you enjoy the book. 


Journal Entry 13 by wanderingstar8 at London, Greater London United Kingdom on Sunday, March 10, 2013

This book has not been rated.

ETMadrid reminded me that I hadn't journalled this yet! I still have it and am looking forward to reading it. 


Journal Entry 14 by wingAnonymousFinderwing at Beijing 北京市, Beijing China on Saturday, January 10, 2015

This book has not been rated.

I run a bookswap meeting in Beijing and we just found the book while taking them out for this month's meetup!
It was probably dropped off last month and no one noticed.  


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