Philippe Claudel - Author

About the Author

Philippe Claudel is a novelist, film director and university lecturer. He is the author of Grey Souls, Brodeck's Report, Monsieur Linh and His Child and The Investigation and was appointed to l'Academie Goncourt in 2012. Euan Cameron's translations include works by Julien Green, Simone de Beauvoir and Paul Morand, biographies of Marcel Proust and Irene Nemirovsky.

Featured books by Philippe Claudel

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/10/2014

From the sizzling sharpness of freshly cut garlic to the cool tang of a father's aftershave; the heady intoxication of a fumbled first kiss to the anodyne void of disinfectant and death, this is a decadently original olfactory memoir. In sixty-three elusive episodes we roam freely across the countryside of Lorraine, North-East France, from kitchen to farm to a lover's bed. Recognising the bittersweet nostalgia of a scent that slips away on the summer breeze, Claudel demonstrates again his impeccable grasp of the personal and the universal, interweaved with a rare self-deprecating charm. This is an evocative patchwork at once earthy and ethereal, erotic and heart-breaking. Claudel permits us a glimpse of moments that have driven him to delight or despair, creating through the fading aromas of the past fragments of humour, insight and quite intangible beauty.

Other books by Philippe Claudel

The Tree of the Toraja

The Tree of the Toraja

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/07/2018

A middle-aged filmmaker visits Indonesia and becomes entranced by the Toraja custom of interning the bodies of very young deceased children in the trunks of trees. In time, the trunk heals, encasing and protecting the tiny bodies as the tree grows slowly heavenwards. On his return to France, the filmmaker receives news that his dearest friend is dying of cancer, prompting a reflection on the part death occupies in our existence, our inability to confront our mortality and our struggle to conceive of a happy life after a devastating loss. For the Toraja, dying is a central part of being alive. Death is at the forefront of their culture, unlike the western preference for keeping death firmly in the shadows, unacknowledged until it begins to really breathe down your neck and simply cannot be ignored; a taboo subject to be feared and resented. Like the trees of the Toraja, this powerful novel encloses and preserves memories of lost loves and friendships, and contains the promise of rebirth and rebuilding, even after a terrible tragedy.

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Paperback Release Date: 29/09/2015

From the sizzling sharpness of freshly cut garlic to the cool tang of a father's aftershave; the heady intoxication of a fumbled first kiss to the anodyne void of disinfectant and death, this is a decadently original olfactory memoir. In sixty-three elusive episodes we roam freely across the countryside of Lorraine, North-East France, from kitchen to farm to a lover's bed. Recognising the bittersweet nostalgia of a scent that slips away on the summer breeze, Claudel demonstrates again his impeccable grasp of the personal and the universal, interweaved with a rare, self-deprecating charm. This is an evocative patchwork at once earthy and ethereal, erotic and heart-breaking. Claudel permits us a glimpse of moments that have driven him to delight or despair, creating through the fading aromas of the past fragments of humour, insight and quite intangible beauty.

Grey Souls

Grey Souls

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/05/2015

A bestseller in France and winner of the Prix Renaudot, Grey Souls is a mesmerising and atmospheric tale of three mysterious deaths in an oddly isolated French village during World War I. The placid daily life of a small town near the front seems impervious to the nearby pounding of artillery fire and the parade of wounded strangers passing through its streets. But the illusion of calm is soon shattered by the deaths of three innocents - the charming new schoolmistress who captures every male heart only to kill herself; an angelic ten-year-old girl who is found strangled; and a local policeman's cherished wife, who dies alone in labour while her husband is hunting the murderer. Twenty years later, the policeman still struggles to make sense of these tragedies, a struggle that both torments and sustains him. But excavating the town's secret history will bring neither peace to him nor justice to the wicked.

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/10/2014

From the sizzling sharpness of freshly cut garlic to the cool tang of a father's aftershave; the heady intoxication of a fumbled first kiss to the anodyne void of disinfectant and death, this is a decadently original olfactory memoir. In sixty-three elusive episodes we roam freely across the countryside of Lorraine, North-East France, from kitchen to farm to a lover's bed. Recognising the bittersweet nostalgia of a scent that slips away on the summer breeze, Claudel demonstrates again his impeccable grasp of the personal and the universal, interweaved with a rare self-deprecating charm. This is an evocative patchwork at once earthy and ethereal, erotic and heart-breaking. Claudel permits us a glimpse of moments that have driven him to delight or despair, creating through the fading aromas of the past fragments of humour, insight and quite intangible beauty.

Monsieur Linh and His Child

Monsieur Linh and His Child

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/02/2012

Traumatized by memories of his war-ravaged country, and with his son and daughter-in-law dead, Monsieur Linh travels to a foreign land to bring the child in his arms to safety. The other refugees in the detention centre are unsure how to help the old man; his caseworkers are compassionate, but overworked. Monsieur Linh struggles beneath the weight of his sorrow, and becomes increasingly bewildered and isolated in this unfamiliar, fast-moving town. And then he encounters Monsieur Bark. They do not speak each other's language, but Monsieur Bark is sympathetic to the foreigner's need to care for the child. Recently widowed and equally alone, he is eager to talk, and Monsieur Linh knows how to listen. The two men share their solitude, and find friendship in an unlikely dialogue between two very different cultures. Monsieur Linh and His Child is a remarkable novel with an extraordinary twist, a subtle portrait of friendship and a dialogue between two cultures.

Monsieur Linh and His Child

Monsieur Linh and His Child

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Hardback Release Date: 31/03/2011

Traumatized by memories of his war-ravaged country, and with his son and daughter-in-law dead, Monsieur Linh travels to a foreign land to bring the child in his arms to safety. The other refugees in the detention centre are unsure how to help the old man; his caseworkers are compassionate, but overworked. Monsieur Linh struggles beneath the weight of his sorrow, and becomes increasingly bewildered and isolated in this strange, fast-moving town. And then he encounters Monsieur Bark. Neither speaks the other's language, but Monsieur Bark is sympathetic to the foreigner's need to care for the child. Recently widowed and equally alone, he is eager to talk, and Monsieur Linh knows how to listen. The two men share their solitude, and find friendship in an unlikely dialogue between two very different cultures. Delicate and restrained, but with an extraordinary twist, Monsieur Linh and His Child is another limpid, immensely moving novel of perfect simplicity, by the author of Brodeck's Report.

Brodeck's Report WINNER OF THE INDEPENDENT FOREIGN FICTION PRIZE

Brodeck's Report WINNER OF THE INDEPENDENT FOREIGN FICTION PRIZE

Author: Philippe Claudel Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/01/2010

Winner of the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize 2010 A murder investigation in post-war France becomes an exploration of the legacy of German occupation. From his village in post-war France, Brodeck makes his solitary journeys into the mountains to collect data on the natural environment. Day by day he also reconstructs his own life, all but lost in the years he spent in a camp during the war. No-one had expected to see him again. One day, a flamboyant stranger rides into the village, upsetting the fragile balance of everyday life. Soon he is named the Anderer, the other , and tensions rise until, one night, the newcomer is murdered. Brodeck is instructed to write an account of the events leading to his death, but his report delivers much more than the bare facts: it becomes the story of a community coming to terms with the legacy of enemy occupation. In a powerful narrative of exceptional fascination, Brodeck's Report explores the very limits of humanity.

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