• La Chambre des Officiers

  • By: Marc Dugain
  • Narrated by: Pierre Moquet
  • Length: 3 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 22-05-15
  • Language: French
  • Publisher: SonoBook
  • 5 out of 5 stars 5.0 (2 ratings)

Summary

C'est l'histoire d'Adrien, un jeune ingénieur officier en 1914, à qui tout sourit. Mais, dans les premiers jours de la guerre, lors d'une reconnaissance sur les bords de la Meuse, un éclat d'obus le défigure. En un instant, il est devenu un monstre, une "gueule cassée". Adrien ne connaîtra ni l'horreur des tranchées ni la boue, le froid, la peur ou les rats.
Transféré au Val-de-Grâce, il rejoint une chambre réservée aux officiers. Une pièce sans miroir où l'on ne se voit que dans le regard des autres. Il y restera cinq ans. Cinq ans entre parenthèses. Cinq ans pour penser à l'avenir, à l'après-guerre, à Clémence qui l'a connu avec son visage d'ange. Cinq ans à nouer des amitiés déterminantes pour le reste de son existence...

Adapté au cinéma par François Dupeyron, il a été présenté au Festival de Cannes.
©1998 JC Lattès (P)2014 Sonobook
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Critic reviews

La presse en parle :
"De cette épopée dramatique, émouvante, mais drôle aussi parfois, on retiendra que des blessures naît aussi la grâce. Dugain a le tact des grands guides, il nous entraîne là où nous n’aurions jamais eu le cran d'aller seul."
Erik Orsenna, Le Point

"Poignant, à faire lire à tous"
Martine Laval, Télérama
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Regular price: £19.59

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Rubycat on 02-06-18

Beautiful in its simplicity

A very sad and thought-provoking story, with many neat, considered observations of the protagonist’s different situations, as well as his carefully described opinions on humanity itself. A beautiful tale of triumph in the face of adversity. I had previously read Pierre Lemaitre’s Au Revoir Là-Haut, which also has a focus on the ‘gueules cassées’ of the First World War (and is also brilliant, but in a very different way). The narrator has a pleasant voice.

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5 out of 5 stars
By Mary Carnegie on 14-02-18

Courage, fortitude et camaraderie

This book could form one wing of a triptych matched by Au Revoir Là-haut on the other side (maybe « Le Feu » as centrepiece?). Adrien has his face destroyed on the first day of war, without ever seeing a German, Lemaitre’s Édouard in the last days of WWI, after 4 years of horror somehow survived.
One slowly reconstructs a life, not the one he’d expected, but fulfilled. He accepts multiple operations which restore his ability to speak and swallow forming along the way solid friendships and mutual support. The other rejects any surgical intervention beyond the minimum to save his life, but even that he might have refused had he been capable - the rest of that novel is between absurdity (in the literary sense) and comment on those who profit from war and the treatment of those who have survived military service - embarrassing the countries they served.

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