Already a huge hit in France, the new novel from Independent Foreign Fiction Award-winning author of ‘Windows on the World’.In his most autobiographical text to date, Beigbeder recounts his stay in a French police cell in January 2008, after he was arrested for snorting cocaine off a car bonnet outside a nightclub in the super-chic 8th arrondissement of Paris. As he lies in the cell, he revisits his childhood, from the carefree days when his grandfather taught him to skim pebbles at the beach in Cénitz, to his parents’ divorce, the conflicting influences of his hedonistic father and studious, seemingly conventional brother who ‘has it all’, and his own first, unrequited loves. This patchwork of memories is as much a portrait of the era as it is the story of a fragile, self-critical man who has finally dropped the mask.Sharp, witty – with a particularly pitiless irony directed at himself – and yet tender, ‘A French Novel’ is a gem. Beigbeder’s reminiscences, his search for answers in the lost country of his childhood, will speak to a whole generation searching for its soul.
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