First Thing You See
Arthur Dreyfuss is a young mechanic at a garage in the little community of Long, France. He has a small flat and leads a simple life. So, imagine his surprise when he opens his door one evening to find a distraught Hollywood starlet standing before him. But although feigning an American accent, this woman is not all that she seems. For her name is actually Jeanine Foucamprez - and her story is very different from the glamorous life of a star. Arthur is not all he seems, either; a lover of poetry with a darker past than one might imagine, he has learnt to see beauty in the mundane. A tender story about two fragile souls trying to love each other, THE FIRST THING YOU SEE will convince you that true beauty lies within.
It's a powerful message which begins with the novel's title - a meditation on our obsession with beauty, celebrity and the consequences for those lumbered with one or both, delivered in a deceptively simple package stuffed full of filmic references and peppered with poetic quotations. It's a little gem and it's been a long time in the offing in translation. A Life In Books
Gregoire Delacourt was born in Valenciennes in 1960. His first novel, L'ECRIVAIN DE LA FAMILLE, was published in 2011 and won five literary prizes, including the PRIX MARCEL PAGNOL and the PRIX RIVE GAUCHE. He is the author of THE LIST OF MY DESIRES, a runaway No.1 bestseller in France, with rights sold in 27 countries. His most recent novel - forthcoming in English translation in 2016 - has been longlisted for the PRIX GONCOURT. Gregoire lives in Paris, where he runs an advertising agency with his wife.