Four adult siblings reconnect on a brief adventure through the Loire Valley in this international-bestselling novel by the beloved French author of Billie.Simon and his two sisters, Garance and Lola, flee their cousin's dull wedding--and Simon's judgmental wife--to visit their younger brother, Vincent, who is working as a guide at a château in the heart of the enchanting Tours countryside. For a few hours, they forget about kids, spouses, and work, and lose themselves in a day of laughter, teasing, and memories. Then, as simply and as spontaneously as the adventure began, it ends. All four return to their everyday lives, carrying with them the magic of their brief reunion. They are stronger now, and happier, for having rediscovered the ties that bind them.
Anna Gavalda's international-bestselling novel has been published in more than forty languages. A lighthearted and funny parable about escaping the past to find the future, French Leave is a tribute to sibling relationships, local Loire wines, and the art of being together.
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About the Author
Born in Paris in 1970, Anna Gavalda published her first work in 1999 while working as a high school French teacher. Her first published work was the critically acclaimed collection of short stories, I Wish Someone Were Waiting for Me Somewhere, which sold over half a million copies in her native France and was published in the US by Penguin in 2003. Gavalda has since published three novels, all of which have become bestsellers across Europe. Her first novel, Someone I Loved, was adapted to film in 2009 and her novel Hunting and Gathering was made into a film starring Audrey Tatou and Daniel Auteil. Gavalda's novels and short stories have been translated into over forty languages. She lives in Paris.
Alison Anderson is the author of the novels Hidden Latitudes and Darwin's Wink. Her translations for Europa Editions include four books by Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt, Amélie Nothomb's bestselling novels, and Muriel Barbery's New York Times bestselling novel, The Elegance of the Hedgehog.
Praise for Anna Gavalda
"Both stories have a sentimental streak, but Ms. Gavalda, a best-selling author in her native France, puts them across with charm." --The New York Times
"Gavalda's writing is engaging and lyrical." --World Literature Today
"Gavalda writes warm-hearted fiction, with plenty of culture, emotion and thoughtfulness." --The Telegraph (UK)
"With writing this beautiful and charming, and heartbreakingly sincere, Gavalda makes the journey well worth the effort." --The Cedar Rapids Gazette
"A comedy of happiness that will delight readers." --La Croix
"With French Leave, Gavalda once again demonstrates her delightful uniqueness and buoyancy. Infinitely charming with dialogue that sparkles like fire." --Madame Figaro
"[Like Anne Tyler and Nick Hornby] Anna Gavalda has the ability to create intelligent dramas with a witty sideline in banter-driven dialogue...Her stock in trade is the endearing oddball." --The Independent (UK)
"The qualities that make Anna Gavalda unique include precision, tenderness for her characters, a sense of detail, an intoxicating mix of nostalgia, and a capacity for joy." --Le Figaro
"Laugh-out-loud funny." --Shelf Awareness
"Gavalda's sparkling impertinence and her childlike joie de vivre are irresistible." --Marie Claire (France)
"Gavalda delivers all the elements that seem to be lacking in our current reality: lightheartedness, humor and tenderness."--L'Indépendant
"This jaunty novella, a best seller in France and Germany, is a toast to the moment in time." --The New York Times
"A sensitive, delicate, funny, immensely readable story...Billie is a revelation!" --Olivia de Lamberterie, France 2