The Madeleine Project


Product Details

$23.95  $22.27
New Vessel Press
Publish Date
5.5 X 8.1 X 0.8 inches | 1.01 pounds

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About the Author

Clara Beaudoux is a Paris-based journalist for the France Info news network. Her documentation of The Madeleine Project gained thousands of followers on Twitter when she initiated it in November 2015.

Alison Anderson is a novelist and a translator whose previous translations include The 6:41 to Paris and The Elegance of the Hedgehog. She lives in Buchillon, Switzerland.


This extraordinary little book touched me deeply. Part graphic novel, part literary archeology, the author slowly unpacks a dusty cellar, and brings her subject to life. Even Madeleine's recipes have risen. Who would have guessed Twitter could be so poetic.
--Elizabeth Bard, author of Lunch in Paris: A Love Story, with Recipes and Picnic in Provence

In a time when platforms like Twitter seem more dangerous than hopeful, Clara Beaudoux's magnificent The Madeleine Project offers respite ... a sweet, respectful ode to an ordinary life. It stands as an antidote to pessimism around the social media age--which does not, as it turns out, prevent us from forming bonds, but in fact may enable us to build them across time and space.
--Foreword Reviews (Starred Review)

This magical book tells history in a brilliant, original way for the 21st century and is a deeply moving reconstruction of an ordinary life whereby Madeleine becomes an unforgettable heroine. I loved this book and shall read it again and again.
--Anne Sebba, author of Les Parisiennes: How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved, and Died Under Nazi Occupation

I opened the book out of curiosity and could not stop reading until the end. The Madeleine Project is a wonderfully original and, for the author, a clearly obsessive project which resuscitates an ordinary life in an extraordinary way. It's as if Clara met Madeleine's ghost in the cellar and embarked on a long and illuminating conversation with her.
--Alan Riding, former correspondent for The New York Times and author of And The Show Went On: Cultural Life in Nazi-Occupied Paris

"A life story in objects, it is both a pictorial biography and an illustrated catalogue of everyday things ... A slice of social history is conveyed through the life of an unknown woman who is not a celebrity - for a refreshing change! ... The book also evokes a very real side of Paris not seen in tourist brochures ... like a hidden treasure that asks us what is truly valuable?"

Turns the spotlight on an ordinary Parisian, whose experience reveals what it was like coming of age during World War II ... a voyeuristic delight, fit for anyone who relishes pawing through boxes of forgotten family treasures.
--Library Journal

Beaudoux's exploration of Madeleine grows poignant as she moves from casual speculation to focused investigation and interviewing her neighbors, ultimately elevating the woman's humble life into something inexplicably familiar.
--Shelf Awareness

Techy bookworms will appreciate this endearing tale--told through tweets translated from French to English--about what Clara Beaudoux discovers in a storage space left behind by a previous tenant.
--TimeOut Chicago

Reconstructs Madeleine's life and loves in a moving and absorbing manner.
--The Irish Independent

Having stumbled upon a time capsule in a Paris storage room, Clara Beaudoux tweeted the contents to the world. Her texts and intriguing photos of artifacts were then melded to create a unique and engaging biography.
--Charles Kaiser, author of The Cost of Courage and 1968 in America

This book first delights the brain, then takes over the heart. Tweets turn into literature right before our eyes. As the posts and meticulous photos unfold, the writer deepens her own identity, even as the dead Madeleine emerges in all her eccentric humanity.
--Elizabeth Kendall, author of Autobiography of a Wardrobe and American Daughter

This is a book that makes connections: between generations, between hand written letters from decades ago and the digital age genre of the tweet, between an era that feels lost to us and our daily reality, between our view of history as impersonal, and our sense of each individual's history ... This widening of our perception to include connection with those around us--especially those who may be different from us--may be the greatest gift that The Madeleine Project gives us.
--Cleaver Magazine

Brings the past into the present in a wildly creative and imaginative way. This story is truly special and will stay with you long after you put the book down.
--Samantha Vérant, author of Seven Letters from Paris and How to Make A French Family

Simply magical ... Words and images, magnified in this book, are woven together in small strokes to create two moving portraits of women.

A beautiful book that bears witness. An original compilation of traces, thoughts and photos that form the strata of our collective memory.

A strange but staggering experience.
--Le Figaro littéraire

A hymn to recovered memory.