Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud is not Kurt Vonnegut

May 14th, 2010 § 0 comments

Advance reader response has returned to us in the form of some hilarious suspicions that we are taking this opportunity to quash in the proverbial cradle. To wit, despite all prominently featured photographic evidence to the contrary, Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud is not Kurt Vonnegut. He was, for instance, not yet conceived when Dresden was firebombed. Proof of the existence of Tralfamadorians may alter our perspective on but not the sequence of these facts, although both authors have written about time travel, the Second World War, getting old, being too young, failed marriages, the general waste of life, the irony of fate, the indifference of the universe, and porn actresses. The imminent release of A Life on Paper is not an elaborate hoax to foist, upon an unsuspecting and recently bereaved reading public, secretly discovered and previously unpublished manuscripts by Kurt Vonnegut, written using another name and left in a drawer (the lower left, locked) with instructions to publish thereunder. The name Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud may be mathematically construed to designate a set that that shares philosophical but no fleshly elements with the set designated by the name Kurt Vonnegut. Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud is an actual French author, alive and well and living near Paris, first published in 1972 by the prestigious house of Grasset (Proust’s original publishers). Habeas corpus, you say, shaking your fist? Well, sadly (or conveniently, some will snort), Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud has suffered from a lifelong fear of flying, and it is doubtful (if not entirely impossible) he will make an appearance in the U.S. related to his English debut with Small Beer (unless someone buys him a round-trip Cunard liner ticket… hint, hint, French Embassy). Nevertheless, those in England are encouraged (as recently announced on Small Beer’s Not A Journal) to see for themselves when Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud appears in person on:

Tuesday, 15 June 7.30pm
£5, conc. £3 | in English | Institut français, 17 Queensberry Place SW7 2DT, 020 7073 1350
Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud and Helen Simpson on short stories

To celebrate the publication of his first book in English, Prix Goncourt-winner Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud will discuss the particularities and differences of short stories in France and in the UK with Helen Simpson.

Those in France may attest (sometimes firsthand, sometimes only through his books) to the author’s existence.

The strenuousness of these assertions–mine and publisher Small Beer’s–should not, I repeat, decidedly not be construed as protest, or evidence of insincerity. That is all.

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