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Overview

Astragal by Albertine Sarrazin

As alive as a Godard movie, this lost classic of ’60s French literature is backAs if the reader were riding shotgun, this intensely vivid novel captures a life on the lam. “L’astragale” is the French word for the ankle bone Albertine Sarrazin’s heroine Anne breaks as she leaps from her jail cell to freedom. As she drags herself down the road, away from the prison walls, she is rescued by Julien, himself a small-time criminal, who keeps her hidden. They fall in love. Fear of capture, memories of her prison cell, claustrophobia in her hideaways: every detail is fiercely felt.Astragal burst onto the French literary scene in 1965; its fiery and vivacious style was entirely new, and Sarrazin became a celebrity overnight. But as fate would have it, Sarrazin herself kept running into trouble with the law, even as she became a star.She died from a botched surgery at the height of her fame. Sarrazin’s life and work (her novels are semi-autobiographical) have been the subject of intense fascination in France; a new adaptation of Astragal is currently being filmed. Patti Smith, who brought Astragal to the attention of New Directions, contributes an enthusiastic introduction to one of her favorite writers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780811220736
Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publication date: 04/26/2013
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 186
Sales rank: 849,013
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Albertine Sarrazin (1937–1967) was a French-Algerian writer. At an early age she abandoned her studies and turned to a life of crime and prostitution. She wrote her first two novels in prison and died at twenty-nine.

Patsy Southgate (1928–1998) was an integral figure of both the 1950s Parisian literary scene and the New York School.

Patti Smith is a poet, performer, visual artist, and author of the National Book Award-winning memoir Just Kids. She has twelve albums, has had numerous gallery shows, and continues to give concerts of her music and poetry. Her books include Early Work, The Coral Sea, Witt, Babel, Auguries of Innocence,
Woolgathering, Land 250, Trois, and many others. She lives in New York.

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