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by Denis Belloc
Translated by William Rodarmor

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Product Details

Verba Mundi

ISBN: 978-0-87923-858-2
Pages: 114
Size: 5.9" x 8.6"
Published: August 1991
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In this brilliant tale of violent sexuality, set forth in stark, hypnotic prose, Denis Belloc presents a straightforward narrative of the homosexual underworld in 1960s Paris. As a young child, Denis (autobiographical parallels are intentional) witnesses his father's death in a sideshow boxing match and is left with nothing but faded photographs. Numbed by his mother's neglect and her new husband's abusive treatment, he turns to Paris's teeming street life and to the sordid corners of the city's "tearooms" (public restrooms). He is absorbed quickly into a world of physical and emotional prostitution, and finds temporary stability only with a few lovers and friends. Belloc's detached style is devoid of self-pity, and creates a savage, involving tension. Blasphemous, unrelenting, uninhibited, this novel will leave no one indifferent.

Praise for Neons

There's much brilliance in Neons. Belloc's story of homosexual underlife in Paris may be ages old, but he has sculpted it into a sequence of amazing musical fragments whose cacophonous honesty is perfectly matched to a prose both offhanded and capable of unnerving emotional feats. —Dennis Cooper
This explosive and magnificent book speaks the truth, always. —Marguerite Duras
Denis Belloc
Dennis Belloc was born in La Rochelle, France in 1949. His childhood was marred by a neglectful mother and an abusive stepfather, which led him to seek solace in drugs and prostitution. He stated that writing, a career he never dreamed of in his youth, served a similar role - it gave him comfort. His semi-autobiographical novels deal frankly with the events of his youth. Neons, his first novel to be translated into English, concerns his discovery of his homosexuality, Suzanne his relationship with his mother, and Képas his struggles with addiction. His 1994 novel Les Ailes de Julien was adapted for film in 1998 under the title Victor... pendant qu'il est trop tard.

William Rodarmor
William Rodarmor is a veteran French translator and a former fellow at the Banff International Literary Translation Centre. He lives in Berkeley, California, where he teaches at UC Berkeley's School of Journalism.