When Gabriel Rivages recounts the life of Olympic gold medalist and silver-screen heart-throb Johnny Weissmuller (1904-1984), he brings to life a vibrant patchwork of America’s 20th century, from its athletic exploits to its literary underground, from its cinematic glory to its obscure failures. Burroughs sells pencil sharpeners, Einstein crosses paths with squirrel hunters, we play golf in Cuba, JFK becomes an airport, the world record for the 100m freestyle swim is broken, Tarzan saves Jane, a corrupt accountant runs away with the savings, the Second World War makes waves in Lake Michigan, and a living legend wraps up a storied career as a host in a Las Vegas restaurant.
Hungary-Hollywood Express is the first novel in Éric Plamondon’s 1984 trilogy. The second and third volumes, Mayonnaise and Apple S, turn their lens on the poet Richard Brautigan and Apple founder Steve Jobs respectively. Esplanade Books will publish them in 2017 and 2018 translated by novelist Dimitri Nasrallah.
“A portrait and kaleidoscope of a character who is truer than life.” –Josée Lapointe, La Presse
“A novel for the Wikipedia generation.” –Dominque Tardif, Voir
“[Plamondon] demonstrates that we can approach drama without falling into pathos or cynicism.” –Judy Quinn, Nuit Blanche