So, what does “La grande bookstore” Augustin Trapenard version look like?

So, what does “La grande bookstore” Augustin Trapenard version look like?

The host succeeded François Busnel at the controls of the literary program of France 5, this Wednesday, September 7. A seamless transition, well served by the interviewer’s natural panache and a four-star guest cast.

“Be indulgent with me, I’m a little stressed. » Behind the scenes, we felt Augustin Trapenard in his little shoes, Monday, September 5, when he spoke one last time to his four guests, just before the opening credits of The big bookstore. Recorded under live conditions, the program aired Wednesday at 9 p.m. on France 5.

For his first at the helm of a safe bet on TV, he had invited four figures of the literary season (Virginie Despentes, Lola Lafon, Laurent Gaudé and Blandine Rinkel) on the set in the shape of an open book, where two sofas sit enthroned. No revolution in form, no frills: in this unchanged and sober decor, in blue and red tones, Trapenard has left a few books in disorder on the ground, a sign that a page has just been turned.

“How can a book sometimes reconcile us? » immediately attacks the former host of Boomerang on France Inter, warm and very in control. His broad question allows everyone to dive into it, considering, as Laurent Gaudethat “literature is not the place of politeness”. It is however all in courtesy that is tied, for an hour and a half, a casual conversation, during which we will listen to each other religiously. The book of one, the trade secrets of the other, a few quotes read aloud, strong support for the writer Salman Rushdie, stabbed in August in the United States: it’s fluid, and The big bookstore reopens its doors as we have known it for fourteen years, with more reflection than promotion.

Sometimes we almost pinch ourselves not to see or hear Francois Busnel – the former host, who remained producer of the show – in place of Augustin Trapenard, as their postures are similar. Same appetite in the voice, warm and composed, same benevolent calm: the 400,000 followers on average of the show will find themselves there. Here is Trapenard, noticed for almost ten years for his sometimes mind-blowing literary program conceptss (21 cm, Plumard…), almost back in line, playing continuity. At home, even, without fuss or false note.

Torments of the time and tragedies of history

But little by little, the host gets rid of his files, alternates face-to-face with the guests and collective exchanges. The word, beautiful and raw, circulates, and the natural comes back at a gallop: its short, disconcerting even perched questions, become one of its trademarksfind a box. “What is urgent to re-imagine today? », « What does not belong to you? », « Of what is the writer the guardian? ». He turns to Virginie Despentes : “What do you do with your anger?” “I’m getting old on it” she replies tit for tat. The star of the new literary season, just excluded from the first selection of the Goncourt 2022 prize for having been a juror, confides: yes, she tried, by correcting her manuscript Dear asshole, to make it ” softer “, because, she warns, she no longer has ” urge “ that we him “hit it”. How wise this great bookshop is.

Laure Calamy reads Despentes.

Laure Calamy reads Despentes.

Screenshot/France 5

Suddenly the image freezes and pops up Laura Calamy, green blouse, long black hair falling on the shoulder. The actress revealed in the series Ten percent, isolated in a corner of the set, reads, almost theatrically, an extract from Dear asshole. Guaranteed effect. Despentes’ face lights up. “I knew there was a surprise, but I was afraid it was bad,” she laughs. Trapenard, served by this prestigious set, weaves links between the works, reads a few excerpts, and, between cyberbullying, male-female friendship, violence, relationship to the body, the evening team holds a living room, strong in words fed on the torments of the time and the tragedies of history.

We pass from gravity to laughter, until the emotion of Lola Lafon contaminates the tray. The author of When you listen to this song recounts her night spent at the Anne-Frank museum, and brilliantly defends the former deportee of Auschwitz as a writer: “She writes to us, she does not write to herself”, she chants, her eyes reddened. We listen without flinching, and his skin-deep sensitivity bursts the screen. “We’re going to come to our senses” breathes the host, before starting again with a vengeance: “How do you feel alive when you write? “It’s not easy to answer” Despentes hesitates. “My questions are not easy Virginie, we are not at Club Med, we are at The big bookstore ! »

Side realization, Augustin Trapenard promised an effort on the setting in image of the book, that does not jump with the eyes yet, so much the word of the authors prevails, and too bad for the rhythm, sometimes. But the 43-year-old literary critic settled into the chair as if it had always been his. He gave it up, before the end credits, to the young novelist Blandine Rinkel, in charge of closing the show as she would have closed a book, by reading in front of the camera a strong text that she had specifically written. You definitely feel good in this great bookshop.

The great library, magazine (90 min) directed by Adrien Soland and produced by François Busnel. Available in replay on

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