The Confidant

The Confidant

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Paris, 1975. Sifting through the letters of condolence after her mother's death, Camille discovers a strange missive sent by someone she does not know. She thinks it is probably an error. But then, every Tuesday, a new letter arrives, recounting a tale of two impossible loves, four broken destinies, until the final denouement destroys everything in its inevitable path. Little by little, Camille begins to piece together the puzzle and is shocked to realise that this story has a direct bearing upon her own life. Alternating Camille's story and the mysterious letters from the unknown correspondent, Gremillon transports us to the years between 1939 and 1943, a fascinating time in French history, to tell a powerful story of friendship and secrets between women, of surrogacy, passionate love, jealousy, revenge and reconciliation. The Confidant is a thrilling debut novel that blends a historical setting and page-turning psychological suspense with a virtuoso literary style. Along with its success in France, translation rights have been sold in 18 territories.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 272 pages
  • 155 x 234 x 19mm | 302g
  • The Text Publishing Company
  • Melbourne, Australia
  • English
  • 1921758937
  • 9781921758935

Review quote

'Elegantly translated by Alison Anderson into an English that does justice to Gremillon's spare, sophisticated prose, this is another successful exploration of love, war and identity.' * Sunday Canberra Times * `This suspenseful page-turner, set in and around Paris between 1939 and 1975, mixes romance, revenge and French history with aplomb.' * Instyle Magazine * `Gremillon's debut novel, set against the backdrop of WWII Paris, cleverly weaves two stories together to create a truly compelling read.' * Grazia Magazine * `Step back in time in this intriguing French mystery...Gremillon expertly builds the psychological suspense.' * Courier-Mail * 'A riveting story, that is both thriller and historical tale...This first-time novelist has produced a highly mature text, that displays an extraordinary mastery of narrative, and a feel for suspense that is worthy of the best films. And above all, her characters are endowed with psychological depth.' * Le Figaro Litteraire * `Helene Gremillon takes us into the heart of a family secret: unspoken love, hidden hatred and revenge with dire consequences. A novel written in two time frames, with two voices, which rewards us twice over, by going straight to the heart.' * Elle * `A novel about the complicity between history with a small "h" - the characters' stories-and History with a capital "H". As in Bernard Schlink's The Reader, nothing is more moving than to witness characters as castaways shipwrecked by History.' * BSC World News * `A complex plot, crystalline writing-Helene Gremillon's talent explodes in this first novel, as much in her historical precision as in the suspense that lasts until the final paragraph.' * Le Nouvel Observateur *
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About Helene Gremillon

Helene Gremillon was born in 1977. She has degrees in literature and history and has worked as a journalist at the French newspaper, Le Figaro, before becoming a full-time writer. The Confidant is her first novel. She lives in Paris with her partner, singer and songwriter Julien Clerc, and their child. She is working on her next novel.
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