In “L’embrasée”, her new youth novel, Guadeloupean author Estelle-Sarah Bulle reaffirms her art as a storyteller

From his first novel Where the dogs bark by the tail ” published in 2018 by Lian Lévi, Estelle-Sarah Bulle who decided, in her forties, to devote herself exclusively to writing, has revealed herself as a writer in her own right in the fairly restricted circle of literature. French.

This first work which, while mixing autobiography and fiction, recounted the adventures of a West Indian family torn between Guadeloupe and France, between its Guadeloupean cultural identity and French culture, was hailed by literary critics. Some like Télérama have spoken of ” facetious poetry » where the theme of exile and uprooting is treated as « delicate way “. Others, like La Croix, felt that it was ” a poetic and political epic”.

It is in any case a glowing reception for this first attempt that illustrates the many distinctions received such as the Carbet Prize for the Caribbean and the All-World initiated by Edouard Glissant, the Stanislas Prize for the first novel or the Eugène Dabit Prize for populist novel.

A shimmering writing adapted to a young audience

In 2020, consecrated and crowned with many marks of recognition, this native of Guadeloupe, born 48 years ago in Créteil, in the Paris region, then attempted an excursion into children’s literature with a new work called “The ghosts of Issa » published by editions “leisure school”.

In this novel dedicated to adolescents, whose parents are from Mayotte, but who grew up in the Paris region, Estelle -Sarah Bulle offers us, in a writing always ” shimmering ” although it is adapted to a young audience, a work on the feeling of guilt of these teenagers.

In 2021, return to adult literature with ” The most shooting stars » where Estelle-Sarah Bulle tries to retrace the history of the shooting of the film « Orfeu Negro » by Marcel Camus from the most famous love story in Greek mythology « Orpheus and Eurydice “.

A cult film which received the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1959 and the Oscar for best foreign film in Hollywood in 1960. Her work is a clever mix of reality and fiction in which the Guadeloupean author makes us relive the political-economic-social context that prevailed at the time in Brazil, location of the filming, and how cinema can also be an instrument of political and geopolitical power.

Dialogues interspersed with Creole expressions

In this year 2022, Estelle-Sarah Bulle is diving back into children’s literature by offering us her second children’s novel entitled ” The Blaze » published by Caraïbéditions in which the Guadeloupean author continues to explore the torments of adolescents. This time, it’s about friendship, mutual aid, solidarity, but also generational conflicts against a backdrop of bad weather.

Paul, 14, from Guyana, is a particularly bright but shy teenager who hides a deep wound and who feels a permanent threat hovering over him without being able to quite identify it. He will meet two other teenagers, Amalia and Jory, and befriend them during a scientific mission led by his parents in a village called Vauclerc, nestled on the slopes of Embrasée, a powerful volcano found on the island. The three new friends will get to know each other, help each other and overcome the complicated relationships they have with their respective parents. All this against the backdrop of a tropical storm.

A beautiful lesson in friendship and a book full of lessons to learn about the generational gap that separates children from parents with the traumatic consequences that can result.

In ” The Blaze “, Estelle-Sarah Bulle reaffirms all her art as a storyteller, illuminating her story with a rich dialogue interspersed with Creole expressions, thus expressing the orality of Creole which demonstrates that it is a true ” romantic language »as the Martinican writer Patrick Chamoiseau rightly asserts.


The Blaze

By Estelle-Sarah Bulle


At Caraïbéditions

424 pages

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In “L’embrasée”, her new youth novel, Guadeloupean author Estelle-Sarah Bulle reaffirms her art as a storyteller