Eddy L. Harris takes the plunge once again

Cassiopée, blogger and contributor
of the group reading
20 Minutes Books, recommend you Mississippi in the skin by Eddy L. Harris, published September 2, 2021 at Liana Levi Publishing.

Her favorite quote:

“The journey is pain and pleasure, disappointment, learning and loss. It is what we discover, what we leave, the people we meet, what we take and what we give, what we think. “

Why this book?

  • Because in 2016, thirty years after his first journey, Eddy L. Harris is gone. With his canoe, he decided to descend the Mississippi, long weeks of sailing and 4,000 kilometers of paddling. Who has changed the most? The river, him or the whole country? Will the meetings be the same? Rich in exchanges, disturbing, pleasant? He knows the risks, the dangers. Does that make him stronger? Not necessarily, his body is thirty years older. So whatever, the main thing for him is to take up the challenge he has set for himself, to set off again and to succeed.
  • Because in the background, deep reflections regularly come back on racism, on people with black skin. On the hope that was put in Barack Obama, a black president who could do, who was going to do, who was elected twice, etc. and which in the end disappointed him… By setting out again on the river, he wanted to see if the country had really changed… There are nevertheless these two parishes, one white, one black, which have become a single parish. “Not a united church but a unifying church. »Is this enough to have hope in man?
  • Because, whatever the obstacles, the annoyances, disillusionment, Eddy L. Harris loves life, deeply, and he conveys that love in his writing. He lives a special relationship with the Mississippi, each trip being an opportunity to meet again, to take stock, to take the time, to feel existing. He says it himself, having arrived is not the end of the journey, it never ends. The writing is magnificent, fluid (thanks to the translator), far-sighted, humble, calm, full of humanity. This testimony interests and captivates for many reasons.

The essentials in 2 minutes

L’intrigue. Thirty years after his first trip, the author sets out again by canoe on the Mississippi from its source to its mouth: 4,000 km to paddle.

Characters. Eddy, Mississippi, those he meets.

Places. The river and the stages.

The time. 2016.

The author. Eddy L. Harris was born in Indianapolis. Pushed by his father, he studied at a white Catholic college. At age 30, he decided to go down the Mississippi by canoe and released a first book. He repeated in 2016. He lives in Pranzac in Charente, near Angoulême.

This book was read with a great pleasure. I listened to his testimony before I found his handwriting and I felt even more like I was sharing his journey.

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