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The List of My Desires by Gregoire Delacourt
  

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

A bittersweet tale set in a small French town and starring 47-year old Jocelyne who has two grown-up children, runs a dressmaking shop and looks after a once abusive husband. She wins the lottery and tells no-one, hiding the cheque in a shoe at the bottom of her wardrobe. Naturally her husband finds it and absconds. This, of course, changes both their lives, some may think for the better. It is interesting to watch the effect of this act on Jocelyne, a woman terrified of change, a woman who still loves her husband.

If you like Gregoire Delacourt you might also like to read books by Patricia Wood, Deborah Moggach and Lionel Shriver.

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Synopsis

The List of My Desires by Gregoire Delacourt

When Jocelyne looks at herself in the mirror, she sees a middle-aged, married woman who runs a dressmaking shop in a small provincial French town and lives a very ordinary existence. But what happened to all those dreams she had when she was 17? Then she wins millions on the lottery and has the chance to change her life for ever. So why does she find herself reluctant to accept the money? To help her decide what to do, she begins to compile a list of her heart's desires, never suspecting for one moment that the decision might be taken out of her hands ...

Reviews

Brief, vignette chapters entice the reader to persist, persuing questions for potential book club discussion that are universally applicable: What is happiness, what can money buy, what happens to love? * LIBRARY JOURNAL (USA) * A novel about dreams and values, what is important and what is not, what we think we want and what we find we need, this is a sad but touching book...A wistful meditation on values and the search for happiness. * THE GOOD BOOK GUIDE * In a short, bittersweet novel, the desires of the heart and the dilemmas of living are braided together with such tender humour and natural pathos that we become as bereft and beguiled as Jo herself. -- Iain Finlayson * SAGA * This moving novel about the search for happiness has already sold more than half a million copies in France. It's the story of 47-year-old Jocelyne, a haberdashery shop owner who lives in a provincial French town with her husband and two children. Her life is enjoyably simple until she wins 3 million euros in the lottery and everything changes when the cheque for her winnings disappears. This heart-breaking book is brilliantly written. -- Francesca Rice * MARIECLAIRE.CO.UK * A massive seller across Europe, this little book of Gallic charm is likely to warm British hearts too. * CHOICE * A sweet and poignant novella and its existential themes are redolent of that other French classic, The Little Prince. Beautifully written, readers will devour it in one sitting, turning the final page with one adage in their heads: the other man's grass is not always greener. * IRISH EXAMINER * The story feels very French. I'm not sure exactly what it is that gives it that French flavour. You can tell it's a book in translation, even though it's beautifully translated, but somehow there's something about the characters that oozes French-ness, if there is such a word! It's a lovely, quick read. The chapters are short, enticing you to read just one more, late into the night, and it's a fairly short book overall that fast readers could probably polish off on an uninterrupted sunny afternoon. * THE BOOK BAG * Impeccably translated from French by Anthea Bell, it's a sparkling and intriguing read...This is a very elegant novel. Its restraint is wonderful, with not a superfluous word. Gregoire Delacourt's keen eye pans deftly across the inner landscape of desire and longing, presenting a tender homage to almost unfashionable virtues - loyalty, duty, patience - without ever taking the high moral ground...These days, it is regarded as cliched and hyperbolic to describe a novel as a tour de force. But I can't think of a more appropriate description for this book. * IRISH INDEPENDENT * This though-provoking debut from Gregoire Delacourt is a huge bestseller in France. * GOOD HOUSEKEEPING * Gregoire Delacourt's fictional The List of My Desires asks what happens when we achieve our heart's desire, after its protagonist Jocelyne wins the EuroMillions lottery. * HARPER'S BAZAAR * This gem of a novel has been a huge success in France with massive sales and rights sold in 27 countries, and it does sound as though its story may 'chime
with many of us

. * CORNFLOWER BOOKS * This was a really interesting read, with a message about the dangers of money and that money doesn't bring you happiness....I give this book 9/10. * VINTAGE ROSE BOOK REVIEWS * Gregoire Delacourt's cautionary tale looks at what happens when Jocelyne Guerbette unexpectedly finds herself in possession of a cheque for 18 million euros after winning the EuroMillions lottery. * LIVING FRANCE * This charmingly Gallic look at how we evaluate our life and the potentially corrosive effects of money is reminiscent of The Elegance of the Hedgehog * THE BOOKSELLER * On the whole, Jocelyne is happy with her life: her dressmaking blog, her factory-worker husband, her children, her friends who dream of winning a fortune. And so when Jocelyne hits the Euromillions jackpot, she keeps it secret, writing a list of simple desires: getting her hair cut, buying a garage door. But while she appreciates the wisdom of being cautious, others don't... * SAINSBURY MAGAZINE * The List of My Desires is a gorgeous little novel that has sold more than half a million copies in its native France. It is as beautifully written as it is heart-breaking, and is a fable-like tale of how money can't buy happiness. * STYLIST *


About the Author

Born in Valenciennes in 1960, Gregoire Delacourt works in advertising. L'Ecrivain de la famille, his first novel, won several awards, among which the Prix Marcel Pagnol and the Prix Rive Gauche.

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Book Info

Publication date

24th April 2014

Author

Gregoire Delacourt

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Author's Website

www.gregoiredelacourt.com/

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Publisher

Weidenfeld & Nicolson an imprint of Orion Publishing Co

Format

Paperback
240 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
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Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9781780224251

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