Insecte, by Claire Castillon

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Original title: Insecte

Author: Claire Castillon

Series: Cotidianul Collection, Literatura #63

Printed by: Universe Publishing House, Inc, 2008

Release year: 2006

Similar to: nothing actually; probably anything signed Chuck Palahniuc?

Recommended for: those with a strong heart and a healthy stomach


Category: WTF books


From the beginning…____________________________________________________________________________

I grabed this book from my personal library. It looked slim and like an easy going read. Well, it read fast, as for the easy going… I would say it was a tough to digest kind of a book. I still don’t know my true feelings regarding it.

Mini summary__________________________________________________________________________________

Actually, this book contains short stories, all with the same common element: mother and daughter. Each story has the same main subject, either told by the mother or the daughter. I will list the stories here, in case you wish to read only one of them, to see what this collection of short stories is really about:

  1. Am spus una – the first one I read; left me cripled for life
  2. Insecta
  3. Un hanorac și cizme îmblănite
  4. Prietena mea cea mai bună
  5. Au băut șampanie la restaurant
  6. Ora corespondenței
  7. Găsim noi o soluție
  8. O să fii femeie, fata mea
  9. Mincinoasa
  10. Un bebeluș roz
  11. Ruptura
  12. Te sărutăm cu drag
  13. Munchhausen prin procură
  14. Rușinea
  15. Tata nu e rău, mamă
  16. Bătaia
  17. Înapoiata
  18. Mama nu moare niciodată
  19. Zece operații în zece ani

Now, as I was writing the titles, I remembered a bit of each and every one of them, and it’s still a traumatic experience.

And this is it: it seems like a very cute story told by a mother or a child. It tells stories from their lives, but everything so serene and innocent that it actually gives nightmares. I wouldn’t know what other book made me feel this way. Maybe one where a sociopath tells jokes while killing somebody? I don’t know, something along those lines.

But, at the end of the story, usually in the last 2-3 rows, something happens that leaves you with your mouth open, yelling a very strong What. The. Frack?! I am not religious, but I swear I almost made the cross sign at some of the endings.

Everything is so sadistic that I honestly can’t believe the author is still, you know, sane after writing such things. Or maybe she wasn’t sane to begin with. I mean… WTF?

On some characters         _________________________________________________________________________

They aren’t really characters per se, I mean, there are some without a name. And all of them are… serene and psychopats. If anybody else read this book, please do tell me if I am the crazy one, or all of these characters are literally psychopats.

So, how about the author?   ______________________________________________________________________

Based on what the back cover says, Claire Castillon is not that sane. Apparently, she sent a literary critic a box filled with animal testicles. So… yes.

Even though I am intrigued and would like to read her other literary creations, I am a bit afraid that her way of telling stories might rub off on me. Don’t get me wrong, it takes a lot of guts to let such thoughts form inside your head, and a huge amount of courage and self awarness to actually make them public, and based on this she has my utmost respect. Furthermore, I enjoyed her way of writing but… There’s something embarassing and uncomfortable to thing about what she wrote. I don’t think this is supposed to be the purpose of a book. Although I do appreciate her work, I’m afraid my time reading horror mother-daughter relationship stories is over.

And to stop the babbling, here are some of her other creations:

  • Le Grenier, 2000
  • La Reine Claude, 2002
  • Pourquoi tu m’aimes pas?, 2003
  • Insecte, 2006
  • On n’empêche pas un petit cœur d’aimer, 2007
  • Les Bulles, 2010
  • Eux, 2014

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