Arnaud Rozan will be Tuesday, November 9 at the Librairie de La Renaissance, in Toulouse, to present “The only drop of his blood”, a masterful first novel.
Chattanooga, Tennessee, early 1920s. Every day Janyce and Emily, two young white teens from good families, stalk Sidney, a young black boy with a strong, muscular body. When one day, Janyce falls into a bank of brambles after getting too close to the object of her troubled desire, Emily accuses Sidney. The village in turmoil sets out in pursuit of the young black man, who has no other choice but to flee to reach the northern United States …
Thus begins “The only drop of blood”, the first novel by Arnaud Rozan, which will be tonight Tuesday at the Renaissance bookstore. No need to beat around the bush: this book is an authentic masterpiece, whose mastery and narrative construction keep the reader in suspense throughout this terrible manhunt.
“I have read a lot of modern American literature and authors like James Baldwin and Russell Banks have left a mark on me,” says the author. I was very impressed by Toni Morrison and her writing which mixes realism with a form of dreamlike, fantastic. “Passionate about American painting (each chapter invites us to discover a work linked to the Harlem Renaissance movement), Arnaud Rozan actually started with Grant Wood’s” American Gothic “painting, and its hijacking by Gordon Parks, with a black woman and a broom instead of the famous peasant couple.
“Behind these two characters, we can see a window with closed curtains: I decided to open these curtains: perhaps they have a 15 or 16-year-old white teenager who is also trying to flee this house, these values… I made him meet Sidney ”. Thus was born this character with an extraordinary destiny, who will discover the blues of Bessie Smith and meet memorable characters, including a deputy sheriff with a mysterious past …
We are eager to say more – and to reveal the meaning of this enigmatic title – but that would deflower a captivating and masterfully conducted story. A magnificent author is born: it is an understatement to say that one awaits the continuation.