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Ilhem

Ilhem

The Value Of Rain - Brandon Shire ” I barely enter life and, thanks to you, [my mother] I believe neither in anything, nor anyone. (…) Any faith seems a deceit to me, any authority a blight, any tenderness calculating. The most sincere friendship, goodwill, tenderness to come, I will suspect it, I will discourage it, I will disavow it. Mankind must live alone. Loving is abdicating. Hating is claiming myself. I am, I live, I attack, I destroy. I think, therefore I contradict.»Hervé Bazin, Viper in the Fist.Charles is fourteen years old when he is discovered with his first love, Robert and sent in an asylum. The Value of Rain is a sharp, unrelenting fiction without any additional plot that could distract or relieve you from your focus on the heart of the matter : what does it actually mean to reject, hurt and damage someone’s self to the point that he can only survive on ferocity? How many layers to peel, how many kinks to work out in order to truly understand someone’s story? What is the cost of becoming responsible of oneself, outgrow the survival mode and build a meaning for one’s life? The book alternates the narrative of Charles’ story with its present culmination, enhancing how much Charles froze in the past. It could be read like a play, each part an act, each scene an added layer, with characters coming on and out of stage. Reading it means to sit, receive and absorb stories of crushed childhoods and youths, accompany them to their conclusion without reward and ponder about what is actually at stake.I left Charles, Robert, Bruce, Snow and all the other characters a few days ago and they’re still inhabiting my brain.It is unsettling, hurtful and I don’t know what else but it’s worth it.”He had seen and penetrated my façade in a single glance, confessing all my frailties and weaknesses without amusement, condemnation or pity. He respected the frailty he saw and would change nothing, unlike all the well meaning people before him.This was my teacher.”Brandon Shire, The Value of Rain