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THE #1 FRENCH BESTSELLER
“Stunning and heart-gripping.” —André Aciman, author of Call Me By Your Name
The award-winning, bestselling French novel by Philippe Besson—“the French Brokeback Mountain” (Elle)—about an affair between two teenage boys in 1984 France, translated with subtle beauty and haunting lyricism by the iconic and internationally acclaimed actress/writer Molly Ringwald.
We drive at high speed along back roads, through woods, vineyards, and oat fields. The bike smells like gasoline and makes a lot of noise, and sometimes I’m frightened when the wheels slip on the gravel on the dirt road, but the only thing that matters is that I’m holding on to him, that I’m holding on to him
Just outside a hotel in Bordeaux, Philippe chances upon a young man who bears a striking resemblance to his first love. What follows is a look back at the relationship he’s never forgotten, a hidden affair with a gorgeous boy named Thomas during their last year of high school. Without ever acknowledging they know each other in the halls, they steal time to meet in secret, carrying on a passionate, world-altering affair.
Dazzlingly rendered in English by Ringwald in her first-ever translation, Besson’s powerfully moving coming-of-age story captures the eroticism and tenderness of first love—and the heartbreaking passage of time.
Philippe Besson is an author, screenwriter, and playwright. His first novel,
In the Absence of Men, was awarded the Emmanuel-Roblès Prize in 2001, and he is also the author of, among others,
Late Autumn (Grand Prize RTL-Lire),
A Boy from Italy, and
The Atlantic House. In 2017 he published
Lie With Me, which has sold more than 120,000 copies and was awarded the Maisons de la Presse Prize, and
A Character from a Novel, an intimate portrait of Emmanuel Macron during his presidential campaign. His novels have been translated into twenty different languages.
Molly Ringwald's writing has appeared in
The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Guardian, and
Vogue, and she is the author of the bestselling novel-in-stories
When It Happens to You.