Born of No Woman
Franck Bouysse, Lara Vergnaud
THE WORD-OF-MOUTH INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER
‘Born of No Woman proves that fiction can still amaze’
‘A vivid, mesmerizing tale’
‘A choral novel radiating with black light’
Nineteenth-century rural France.
Before he is called to bless the body of a woman at the nearby asylum, Father Gabriel receives a strange, troubling confession: hidden under the woman’s dress he will find the notebooks in which she confided the abuses she suffered and the twisted motivations behind them.
And so Rose’s terrible story comes to light: sold as a teenage girl to a rich man, hidden away in a old manor house deep in the woods and caught in a perverse web, manipulated by those society considers her betters.
A girl whose only escape is to capture her life – in all its devastation and hope – in the pages of her diary…
THE HIT NOVEL RECOMMENDED BY FRENCH BOOKSELLERS:
‘The most beautiful French novel of the year’
‘Love at first sight for a book is rare. But this novel left me speechless’
‘Dive in: you’ll come out feeling utterly alive’
‘One of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read’
‘The best book I have read for a long time’
‘This story has something powerful, animal, carnal and terrible too. A punch in the gut’
Here, everything is epiphanic, essential, surprising, whether it be the revelation of a secret or the painting of a detail...At once classic and phantasmagoric, Born of No Woman proves that fiction...can still amaze * Le Monde des livres * A vivid, mesmerizing tale * L'Express * Rare are those who, like Franck Bouysse, manage to write the indescribable, to touch the unspeakable, with so much subtlety and intensity. In spite of the severity and darkness of certain pages, Born of No Woman is a deeply moving and luminous book * La Libre * Born of No Woman is a dazzling, heart-wrenching tale of cruelty and mercy, secrets and horrors. The novel is deeply immersive, gothic, and taut with dread; the prose sings and the characters burn in the heart. Easily my favourite book of the year. Not to be missed * Kim Taylor Blakemore, author of After Alice Fell * One of the most disturbing yet lyrically exquisite novels I've read in a long time . . . Brave, sometimes horrific, Born of No Woman is one of the most compelling novels I have read in many years. Infused with lurid elements of the most gothic fairy tales, it explores the darkest realms of human sexuality * Essie Fox, author of The Last Days of Leda Grey * A haunting, suspenseful gothic tale set in nineteenth-century France that weaves many layers, from the plight of women in that era to class distinctions that lead to oppression of the vulnerable . . . Ultimately, this is a book of hope and the resilience of the human spirit to overcome tragedy. The narrative is elegant, and the viewpoint of every character is compelling and credible. Highly recommended! * Debbie Herbert, author of Not One of Us and Cold Waters * Born of No Woman is beautifully and quietly haunting. Rose's triumph over human weakness, cruelty, and her own powerlessness as a woman without means or status deeply resonates, and the strength of her dignity and resilience lingers long after the pages are turned * Megan Chance, bestselling author of A Splendid Ruin * Undoubtedly effective . . . There are plenty of narrative surprises as Rose's father seeks to recover her, and she falls in love with the mysterious Edmond * Guardian, Best Recent Translated Fiction * This book feels like the Marquis de Sade's Justine if Justine had written it . . . show[ing] the author's keen observational skills when it comes to class and gender * CrimeReads, Best International Crime Fiction of the Month *
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