A fantastic novel was crowned following a literary competition launched on the TikTok platform by Robert Laffont editions, in order to find a new author who defended his project in video. The winner is Axelle Ménéglier, 27, who published Supernova: The Academy of Constellationists Book I on Thursday.
The competition started in February. It involved both aspiring novelists sending their work, without any particular criteria, and a TikTok video of two minutes maximum to present it. Robert Laffont presents the winner as a writing enthusiast who also earns her living as an employee of an escape game room in Toulouse.
The editor reviewed 227 never-published authors' manuscripts, averaging about 200 pages. The jury therefore had to watch nearly 7.5 hours of videos and read 45,000 pages in total. This jury was made up of 10 “booktokers” (TikTok users who talk about books). One of them, who took the pseudonym Oceadorable, explained in a press release from the publisher: “I fell for the pitch of the novel and it was confirmed when I read it!”
This novel of more than 500 pages, written in very classic French (simple past, with imperfect subjunctive), has as its heroine an 18-year-old Londoner who discovers superpowers.
The Chinese design platform TikTok focuses on the book, under the hashtag