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The French controversial bestseller for the first time available in English.
A single mother takes her two young sons on a trip to the seaside. They stay in a hotel, drink hot chocolate and go to the funfair. She wants to protect them from an uncomprehending and cold world. She knows that it will be the last trip for her boys.
A haunting and thought-provoking story about how a mother’s love for her children can be more dangerous than the dark world she is seeking to keep at bay.
Why Peirene chose to publish this book: ‘This is the most impressive novel about the mother and child relationship I have read. Véronique Olmi handles an aspect of motherhood we all too often deny. She depicts a woman's fear of releasing her children into the world. The simple first person narrative achieves an extraordinary level of poetry and inner truth.’ Meike Ziervogel
‘A mesmerising portrait . . . It should be read.’ Nicholas Lezard, Guardian
‘The closing pages are heart-stopping and heartbreaking, yet one finishes this sad tale not depressed but uplifted by its ability to enlarge the reader's sympathies.’ CJ Schuler, Independent
‘Prose . . . filled with sad poetic sense and blunt, bleak realities, compellingly conveyed in Hunter's colloquial English.’ Madeline Clements, Times Literary Supplement
‘Tragic. Moving. Essential reading.’ Rosie Goldsmith, BBC
‘The triumph of Olmi’s book is that it doesn’t analyse . . . And that is very uncomfortable.’ Dan Holloway, Pank
LONGLISTED FOR THE INDEPENDENT FOREIGN FICTION PRIZE 2011
WINNER OF THE SCOTT MONCRIEFF PRIZE FOR FRENCH TRANSLATION 2011