Earlier this year, Nathalie Stalmans, a historian and ethics teacher in our school, has published her 5th novel. It is called "Si j’avais des ailes" and is about Charlotte Brontë’s time at the Pensionnat Heger in Brussels in 1842-43.
The novel opens in 1856, a year after Charlotte’s death. Elizabeth Gaskell is about to visit the Pensionnat to gather information for her biography of Charlotte Brontë. The visitor is awaited with mixed feelings at the school and Charlotte’s stay is told in flashback by various narrators, some sympathetic to her, some hostile. The Brussels background is vividly depicted and this is an engaging look at Charlotte Brontë by a writer who is a native of ‘Villette’ (i.e. the name Charlotte gave to Brussels).
The previous novels by Nathalie Stalmans include "Finis Terrae" and "Le vent du boulet", set in the 17th and 18th centuries respectively, which blend real and imaginary elements to create stories around the inhabitants of a real house in Rue Neuve in Brussels. "Finis Terrae" has been nominated for the "Prix des Lycéens" in 2017.
Talk on 12th October at 2 pm (talk given in English).
Registration essential by mail to Helen.MACEWAN@ec.europa.eu.
Venue for talk: Gemeenschapscentrum Op-Weule (Op-Weule Cultural Centre), 91 rue Saint Lambert/Sint-Lambertusstraat, 1200 Woluwe Saint Lambert/Sint-Lambrechts-Woluwe
Entrance charge: €12 (€7 for "Brussels Brontë Group" members). Pay on the day.