After the immense critical and commercial success of C’estarrive la nuit and du Crépuscule des fauves – a million copies in bookstores – Marc Levy’s new novel, Noa, has just been published in Quebec. Fans will find the protagonists of the famous Group 9, pirates who work for good. And this time, they're going after a big chunk: an Eastern European dictator. Marc Levy has done a phenomenal writing job for this novel and demonstrates the accuracy of his analysis of the international scene.
• To read also: “Noa”: here is an extract from the new novel by Marc Levy
This new mission of Group 9 features a complex plot against the backdrop of international politics, extreme dramatic tension and a fast pace. Once again, lives are in danger and an intrepid young investigative reporter will infiltrate enemy territory.
The writer takes his readers from London to Kyiv, from Vilnius to Rome, in an adventure and spy novel that is also a story that invites reflection on the current state of the world.
Marc Levy demonstrates his mastery of writing; the plot bears witness to in-depth research and an in-depth analysis of international political tensions. Masterful work, all in finesse, coupled with a great evocative force.
Written before the war
Noa, the third volume in the series, was written long before the start of the Ukrainian war. "It was not declared when I had finished it," he explains, in a telephone interview from New York.
"I didn't change anything in the novel because of the events, since I had already anticipated in the novel. I saw the blows coming for a long time. Unfortunately, I didn't change anything. I say unfortunately. The writing was not premonitory, insofar as it seemed obvious to me that it was going to happen. »
“Russia started attacking Europe in 2016, with the US elections. Then Russia intervened massively by influencing the Brexit votes. England would not have separated from Europe if the Russians had not intervened to exercise massive manipulation operations. London was colonized by the Russian oligarchs who seized power and subjugated the English government and ran their campaign successfully, with great blows of disinformation. »
This time, in the novel, the 9 have made it their mission to lend a hand to a population seeking to get rid of a dictator, Loutchin. To transpose what is happening on the world stage into a suspense – what we see in Noa – is a tour de force.
“It is a work of research, documentation and listening that is carried out thanks to the great press reporters who carry out investigations. It is a very meticulous work which consists in following a whole range of investigations and suddenly understanding the overlap between the facts, ”explains the writer.
The interest of fiction, recalls Marc Levy, is that it brings emotions. “Paradoxically, we are more concerned, more preoccupied when we are in the world of fiction, even if fiction and reality merge, because suddenly reality is embodied by the characters and we get closer to these characters. It creates a bond of empathy between the seriousness of the situation and the lives of people. »
fight for freedom
Of Janice, the novel's main character, Marc Levy particularly likes determination, courage, and at the same time, fragility.
“Janice is not a superhero. She fights for the truth, for the freedom of others, and at the same time, she suffers the consequences, which are quite devastating for her. She is someone who is very damaged, who is suffering from the situation she is enduring. It gives her a beauty of soul that touches me. What seduces us about her, ultimately, is her intelligence of the heart. »
♦ In bookstores since yesterday.
♦ Noa is Marc Levy's 23rd novel.
♦ His books have been translated into 50 languages and are internationally successful.
♦ Several of them have been adapted for the screen.
♦ For 20 years, Marc Levy has been the most read French writer in France (source GFK) and in the world, with more than 50 million copies sold.
♦ He will be in Montreal on May 31 and June 1.
“For three hours, Daria has been waiting in a room adjoining the visiting room. A room of twelve square meters where daylight struggles to pass through the bars of a small window. The metal bench can accommodate three people. The word “bench” is flattering for a plank and a backsplash. Daria is alone, visitation rights are rare, the authorities almost never grant any. But today it's different, Daria comes to see Nicolaï to testify to his family that he is alive and in good health. This meeting takes place quarterly and only lasts five minutes. It is the consequence of a barely believable event that happened two years ago. Nicolai is the reason for this story. »
To read, our exclusive excerpt.