IN THE WINKING OF A HERON’S EYE
The publication by L'Atalante of Jean-Claude Dunyach’s short stories continues with a seventh collection. As usual, he sets the subtle fresco of our emotions against a backdrop of offbeat and imaginatively crazy worlds… He writes about our fears, our fantasies, our ambitions and our inadequacies. And he arouses in us such unfamiliar sensations, both agreeable and painful. Each of J-C Dunyach’s short stories modifies the world that comes filtering through our eyes. Disconcerting and triumphant.
“This collection is, implicitly or explicitly, about magic… Or rather my idea of magic, which isn’t necessarily a classic vision (and certainly not that of conventional fantasy.)
I often talked about magic with Ayerdhal. Not the magic of an illusionist or the exterior forces manipulated by thaumaturgy, which neither of us believed in, but the magic born in the hearts and minds of men.”
Dunyach is a master of the short story. Flamboyant and imaginative, subtle storytelling, such strength in the characters, all these attributes make these collections a celebration of intelligence. Certain texts attain a rare strength of emotion, like La station de l’Agnelle (The Station of the Lamb), a tragically human story which rightly gives its name to the first volume. Worth mentioning, in a completely different vein, the hilarious Mémo pour action (Memo for Action), from the second volume Dix jours sans voir la mer (Ten Days without Seeing the Sea): this satire about the way companies function is too good for our author not to have received at some point similar official papers to feed his imagination (not counting the asteroid and intelligent dinosaurs!) …
Stéphanie Nicot, Galaxies
Les Harmoniques célestes (Celestial Harmonics), a homogenous collection whose title entirely matches up with its author, once again confirms that Jean-Claude Dunyach is one of France’s best short story writers. The ideas are brilliant, set out in a clear way, without succumbing to the dryness of a lecture. The omnipresent empathy is often tempered by just an ounce of very human causticity and the careful construction echoes this intention. We want more.
Bruno Para, Bifrost