Published : 14 April 2017
152 pages
N° ISBN : 978-2-36956-052-4


Elsa Levy

Elsa Levy is a Jane-of-all-trades. She published an acclaimed essay entitled Je de société in 2015, wrote op-ed pieces, had her own blog and wrote articles about environment. She is a visual artist and a comedian. Through her many artistic endeavours, she questions in her own brazen and radical way the social comedy of appearances. Bouddha Boudoir is her first novel.

Bouddha Boudoir

Virginie Baudet is a waitress at the Bouddha Boudoir, a voguish bar in Paris decorated with an abundance of statues of the Buddha. Even though she has been working there for five years, she has never wondered what could be hidden behind the laidback sneer of the statues.

She suddenly decides to know, with the help of the only tool she has—online surfing. After reading all the more or less dubious spiritual blogs, Virginie decides that meditation is the best way to connect with the Buddha. And so she starts fiercely meditating but in vain. When YouTube meditation tutorials prove inadequate, she takes lessons with the wildest gurus.

Despite many dodgy teachings and crazy encounters, Virginie gradually changes her mind about her friend Lucas, her boss Jack, her colleague Magalie and everything around her. A neighbour in sore need of help presents her with an unexpected spiritual guide—a 4-year-old child.

On the path to self-awakening, Virginie does not realise the social consequences of such a journey. What if full awareness was also the beginning of the end?

SOME QUESTIONS RAISED BY THE BOOK
• Is spiritual quest still relevant in our modern times?
• Are alternative spiritual ways and their related practices (yoga, sophrology, meditation, alternative medicine...) compatible with the economic system that seems at odds with them?
• Why all the media attention and general concern about well-being (meditation, diet, organic products...) at the heart of hyper-consumerism?
• Do spiritual teachings from Eastern wisdom brought to the Western world by self-proclaimed gurus have any value?
• If we evaluate everything according to a price, what is the worth and value of something free?

Reviews

“A kind of initiatory journey on the job.” Monique Atlan, France 2

“A French Bridget Jones, in short, and that we would take well as a girlfriend.” Céline Vivier, Livres et Fourneaux

“This novel is breathtaking from start to finish. A real tornado.” Aumilieucoule.org