05 avril 2016

Meet the author : Craig Johnson

For Grenoble’s English speakers, the big moment of Le Printemps du Livre was here at last, when we could meet the author Craig Johnson, the great writer from Wyoming.

 Of course this isn’t the first time that I write about him in this blog as I am one of many who are hooked on his books ; I have read all of them, without ever getting the least bit bored.

Why do I like his books ? The answer is easy : I like his characters --- strong, unique, endearing ; his well-constructed plots, and his special talent to have us discover his country, his landscapes, and  climates in such a way that we find ourselves  escaping  from the hum-drum of our daily lives.  And I can’t forget to mention his special Craig Johnson humour and irony.
So much for his books

But it’s obvious that the man himself has other talents : he’s a born actor,  a story-teller who can always spontaneously come up with the little anecdote just perfect to make his point.  He’s also a pro in public relations and, to top it all off, a real charmer who with just three sentences and a burst of laughter has his audience wrapped around his little finger.
Le Printemps du Livre held in Grenoble last weekend provided us with three opportunities to meet him.  The first forum was a time for talking about « whodunit » novels along with two French writers, Martin Ledun and Pierre Pécherot.   At the second « Meet the Author », he talked about his writings in general and about Steamboat in particular.    The third get-together provided an opportunity for his English readers (mainly coming from University Inter-Ages English classes) to chat with the cowboy-writer, in a very informal, but ever so congenial, way…and all in V.O.!   Not a stilted discussion,  just a natural flow of questions and answers : about his work as a writer,  about Wyoming,  about a particular detail in one of his novels, about the United States in general, (and the coming presidential elections !) about his travels throughout France… A real dialogue, with no « B.S. » (as he would say !).  All for the pleasure of those who were there, and there was a big crowd indeed…not everyone could get in.

A pleasant moment of exchange, both linguistic and literary.  You bet ! 

(Thanks to J.B. for the translation)

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