A French Novel

Frédéric Beigbeder

Arrested for snorting cocaine off a car bonnet, award-winning author and quintessential dilettante Frédéric Beigbeder reflects on his troubled childhood, while spending a night in police custody.

Confined to a cell, Frédéric Beigbeder’s seeks escape in his childhood memories, only to discover he can recall just one.

From this, he reconstructs both his past and that of his family; the glamour of Sixties Paris and his father’s playboy life in New York, so distinct from the experiences of his soldier grandfather, whose lifespan Frédéric has now exceeded.

His arrest all over the tabloids, Frédéric wonders if the time has come to grow up. ‘A French Novel’ is a belated coming-of-age tale, profoundly tender and charmingly ironic.

Reviews of A French Novel

    • From the reviews of ‘A French Novel’:
    • ‘Frédéric doesn’t just remember his childhood, he relives it in sensuous detail … though the book grows rich with Frédéric’s nostalgia and regret, it is consistently witty in tone … Beigbeder has a unique sensibility … After its cerebral beginnings ‘A French Novel’ builds to an emotionally luscious conclusion’ Evening Standard
    • ‘Beigbeder is a wind-up merchant par excellence yet, despite his persona of a finger-stabbing pub bore, he has a fine line in self-deprecation as well as any number of caustic quips’ Metro
    • ‘Cooler, self-mocking, but heartfelt as well as ingenious, Frédéric Beigbeder’s ‘A French Novel’ sees the French enfant terrible take his brief detention after a drugs bust as the cue for a romp, both comic and melancholy, though his own career of excess consumption, and that of postwar France’ Independent, ‘Books of the Year’