Julien features at the Alliance Française

Two men talking to each other in a room.
Eric Soulier and Julien Blanc-Gras in conversation. Photo by Nick Hurley

Julien Blanc-Gras addressed a large French-speaking audience in Wellington on the evening of 22 March, as part of ‘Le Mois de la Francophonie’ hosted by the Alliance Française. His talk reflected the wry, humorous and insightful style that he brings to his published works.

A selection of Julien’s books. Photo by Nick Hurley

In conversation with Eric Soulier, Cultural Counsellor at the French Embassy, Julien described his evolution as a travel writer and author. His books range across early travel adventures in Touriste in to his more mature explorations of our world and its inhabitants, including a stay in the sea-level threatened islands of Kiribati in Paradis (avant liquidation) and most recently a selection of ‘postcard’ snapshots in Envoyé un peu spécial.

Julien signs copies of Envoyé un peu spécial. Photo by Nick Hurley

Julien spoke of the deeply personal experience of documenting his own imminent fatherhood in his book In Utero, produced when he realised so few books had been written from the perspective of a father-to-be.

The audience was left with the promise of a forthcoming novel taking a child’s eye view of life in France and New Zealand, which will be informed by Julien’s current residency with his family at Randell Cottage.