As a child, Célia Flaux devoured fairy tales like other sweets. His parents had offered him Most bwaters rwonderful stories, a big collection compiling stories from all over the world and, every evening, she embarked on a new destination: Spain, Slovakia, Serbia, Russia, England… Today, at 40, she is the one who makes her young people travel readers with novels that sometimes borrow from fantasy, sometimes from science fiction or fantasy.
In his latest book, Porcelesoul (1), released by Bayard Jeunesse in early October, it plunges them into a bewitching Japan of legends, an empire made up of five rival clans led by fantastic creatures (dragon, kirin, phoenix, etc.). A world where a magical material, porcelain, shaped into delicate statuettes, expresses the moods of the inhabitants, during their lifetime but also after their death.
Saber fights and twists
As with voodoo dolls, you only need to injure the figurine to reach the person in their flesh. The first volume of the trilogy follows the quest of three teenagers: a rebellious mountain guide, a rônin (masterless samurai) and a porcelain guardian of the imperial court.
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The supernatural elements give relief to the epic adventure, rich in sword fights and twists. For the author, who has immersed herself in the animist beliefs of Shinto, “Magic is hidden everywhere in everyday life and, even if writing fantasy allows all the freedoms because the special effects are not expensive, there is no need to outbid the spectacular to reach the reader. What matters above all is the personal journey of the characters and their relationships. “
The limits of individual freedom
Her books, which are aimed at adolescents and young adults, are “outstretched hands” to the young girl she was at 15, the age at which she began to write. “I felt out of step with our society. And novels like Conquerors of the Impossible by Philippe Ébly or The Eye of the Angel Gods allowed me to broaden my horizons, to ask myself the right questions, like distorting glasses that would allow me to see our world better ”, she believes, convinced that “To read the imagination is to dream of elsewhere in order to find oneself better”.
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In his stories, the characters fight to escape predetermined destinies, the shackles of interventionist societies, real or imaginary: Victorian England and colonial India in Anergique (2), a dystopian France where an authoritarian government has banned from all risky activities (drinking, smoking, parachuting, skiing or acrobatics, etc.) in Le Cirque prohibited (3). Under the guise of an investigation in the circus world, she questions the limits of individual freedom and security at all costs. Questions as current as they are timeless.
(1) The voice of the kirin, volume 1, Bayard Jeunesse, 400 p., € 14.90, from 12 years old.
(2) Actu SF, 2021, 296 p., € 17.90, from 15 years old.
(3) Scrineo, 2019, 256 p., € 16.90, from 13 years old.