Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage, de Paul Martin et Jean-Baptiste Bourgois

2 min

Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage (Violette Hurlevent and the Wild Garden) by Paul Martin and Jean-Baptiste Bourgois

Steeped in literary references and fantastical twists and turns, the adventure of Violette and her dog Pavel celebrates the powers of the imagination. An initiation youth novel, illustrated with great finesse.

© Sarbacane

Made in Lille

Author Paul Martin and cartoonist Jean-Baptiste Bourgois are both from Lille, where they work.

Paul Martin worked for a long time in the youth press, at the Astrapi newspaper and then at the D-Lire magazine, before producing numerous illustrated novels, including the Maudit Manoir series (since 2004).

A graduate of the Cambrai School of Fine Arts, Jean-Baptiste Bourgois has been illustrating youth novels since 2013. His works such as Fatale spirale (Fatal Spiral, 2015) and Popopipo (2016) allow him to showcase his fine, airy pencil lines.

Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage is the fruit of their partnership.


Violette in Wonderland

What happens in the garden next door to where Violette has just moved? Wolves talk, trees come alive and time seems to follow its own rules. The girl and her dog escape a complicated family life, but find another big threat here, in the form of an impending storm. Unless the two are related...

Influenced by Alice in Wonderland and a rich imagination, Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage uses dreamlike narrative to better express the suffering of childhood.



From image to writing

Unusually in the world of illustrated novels, the idea of Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage first came from the pen drawings of Jean-Baptiste Bourgois. He designed the visual universe, the scenery and certain characters before he even constructed the narrative. He entrusted this literary task to Paul Martin, who refined certain character traits and composed the poetic tale of Violette, inspired by the delicate plates created by his partner.


In the realm of classics

The two authors of Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage do not only share a geographical origin. Their taste for Anglo-Saxon literature and the classics of the youth novel deeply permeates the book. From Maurice Sendak to Roadl Dahl to Lewis Carroll, the book's many ethereal references offer just as many reading avenues for young or adult readers, French or foreign.



The Institut français and the project

Violette Hurlevent et le jardin sauvage, by Paul Martin et Jean-Baptiste Bourgois has been translated into russian with the support of the Institut français. 

Through its publication support programmes, the Institut français participates in the dissemination of French language humanities worldwide. Learn more about the publication assistance programmes