Thanks to John Grant, online friend and fellow blogger, I’ve just fin out that seven “Maigrets” have apparently never been published in English — three short stories, and four novels written in the summer of 1929, published under the pseudonyms Christian Brulls and Georges Sim: the so-called “precursors of Maigret,” since Simenon proclaimed that “Pietr-le-letton” was “the first Maigret”.HERE.
And John himself had review The House of Anxiety at Goodreadshere. The first lines reads:
The first Maigret novel, although you may not find it listed in many Maigret bibliographies. Initially published in 1930 as a newspaper serial and the following year as a book, in both instances under the pseudonym Georges Sim, La Maison de l’Inquiétude (The House of Anxiety) has never been commercially translated into English. We’re able to enjoy it thanks to the extraordinary Maigret scholar Stephen Trussel, who translated it in 1999 and has ever since offered it for free on his amazing Maigret site.
Georges Simenon’s first Maigret book was Pietr-le-Letton (translated variously as The Strange Case of Peter the Lett and Maigret and the Enigmatic Lett), written in 1929. Simenon admitted in a conversation, “I did not think of doing a series. I had used the name of a policeman called ‘Maigret’ in ‘Train de Nuit’ and I picked up the name again because it crossed my mind. I did not think of doing any other books at all along the same lines. That idea came from Fayard.” Artheme Fayard, his publisher, gave Simenon a contract for five Maigret novels, and by the summer of 1930 he had produced The Death of M. Gallet, The Crossroads Murders, The Crime at Lock 14 and The Crime of Inspector Maigret — all before the first had been published. Those chosen for the initial launch were The Death of M. Gallet (published later by Penguin as Maigret Stonewalled) and The Crime of Inspector Maigret (also known in England as Maigret and the Hundred Gibbets). Throughout the early Thirties, he wrote some 14 more Maigrets, before taking a break in 1934; he did not write any more Maigrets until 1942, although he continued with his other novels. This collection of about 20 pre-war stories is usually referred to as ‘The early Maigrets’; critics and collectors alike generally regard them as the cream of the Maigret crop (except Thomas Narcejac, who considered that Simenon’s best work appeared after 1942). Source: Georges Simenon’s Maigret Books by Helen MacLeod.
US / 137 min / Color / Pearl Street Films, The Media Farm, K Period Media, The A / Middleton Project, B Story Dir: Kenneth Lonergan Pro: Chris Moore, Lauren Beck, Kevin J. Walsh, Matt Damon, Kimberly Steward Scr: Kenneth Lonergan Cine: Jody Lee Lipes Mus: Lesley Barber Cast: Casey Affleck, Michele Williams, Kyle Chandler, Lucas Hedges, CJ Wilson, Heather Burns, Tate Donovan, Josh Hamilton, Anna Baryshnikov, Matthew Broderick, Gretchen Mol Synopsis: Lee Chandler is a brooding, irritable loner who works as a handyman for a Boston apartment block. One damp winter day he gets a call summoning him to his hometown, north of the city. His brother’s heart has given out suddenly, and he’s been named guardian to his 16-year-old nephew. As if losing his only sibling and doubts about raising a teenager weren’t enough, his return to the past re-opens an unspeakable tragedy. (Official website) Release Dates: 23 January 2016 (Sundance Film Festival), 16 December 2016 (USA), 3 February 2017 (Spain) Spanish title: Manchester frente al mar IMDb Rating: 8.2.
Begoña and I have had the opportunity to go see Manchester by the Sea, a superb film in my view despite the harshness of its proposal, very much worth see it.
Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams and Kyle Chandler star in this emotionally overwhelming and critically acclaimed drama from writer-director Kenneth Lonergan (You Can Count on Me, Margaret), about a reclusive handyman who must face his painful past when he returns to his Massachusetts hometown after the sudden death of his beloved older brother.
With only his third feature in 16 years, writer-director Kenneth Lonergan (You Can Count on Me, Margaret) takes us through a familiar milieu in Manchester by the Sea, but does so in wholly unfamiliar ways.
Lee Chandler (Casey Affleck, in a career-defining performance), is the resident handyman for a small apartment complex in a Boston suburb. He spends his days shovelling snow, fixing leaks, and doing his best to ignore the tenants’ small talk. He spends his evenings either alone in his basement apartment or nursing a beer at his local, where he’ll pick a fight with anyone who throws a glance his way. Yet somehow we know that buried beneath this sadness is another life.
When he receives the news that his older brother Joe (Kyle Chandler) has died of a congenital heart condition and that, to his unpleasant surprise, he’s been appointed legal guardian of Joe’s teenage son, Patrick (Lucas Hedges), Lee returns to his nearby seaside hometown, a place of both cherished and painful memories. Despite the sudden loss of his father, and in stark contrast to his uncle, Patrick is full of life. A popular student, he juggles hockey, band practice, and two girlfriends. As this mismatched pair stumbles through the mundane details of estate planning and the awkward strain of adolescence, Lee is forced to confront his past, revealed seamlessly through flashbacks, and the realities of his present.
Lonergan’s genius is rooted not in the extraordinary, but the ordinary. A master of detail, he uses his character’s daily surroundings and routines to create a beautifully textured reality. He turns the loose narrative structure into one of his film’s greatest strengths: rather than depend on an obvious narrative arc or dramatic set pieces, he draws out the emotion of his text subtly and steadily. In Manchester by the Sea, Lonergan has created a world so messy that it can only be described as wonderfully human. (Kerri Craddock) Source: Toronto International Film Festival
Kenneth Lonergan is now three for three. Following on You Can Count on Me and Margaret,Manchester by the Sea confirms he’s one of contemporary cinema’s most brilliant, moving storytellers (and directors of actors). Lonergan transforms what in lesser hands might have been another entry in the subgenre of blue-collar New England family “miserabilia” into a tragicomic portrait of failure and resilience in a uniquely American vernacular—imagine Eugene O’Neill channeling George S. Kaufman. (Source: The Museum of Modern Art)