Elle is a psychological thriller that recounts thirty days in the life of its heroine Michèle-powerfully portrayed by Isabelle Huppert in Paul Verhoeven's award-winning film-where memory, sex, and death collide on every page.
A few weeks before Christmas, Michèle picks herself up from her living room floor. She has been raped. She has almost no recollection of her attacker but she senses his presence-he is never far away-and this uncanny feeling triggers a whirlwind of events and memories. She begins to fear she is losing her grip on a life already complicated by a demanding job, an ex-husband with a new girlfriend, a jealous lover, and a son trapped in a relationship with his girlfriend pregnant by another man.
Hardened by the consequences of her father's violent past, Michèle-nearing fifty, fiercely independent and unsentimental-refuses to be reduced to a victim. When her rapist begins taunting her with messages, she takes measures to protect herself-until she discovers his identity.
Through the bitingly sarcastic and unflinchingly realist voice of its heroine, Elle paints a striking portrait of one woman's experience that challenges our notions of masculinity and femininity, weakness and strength.