New Press, 9781595589644, 160pp.
Publication Date: April 1, 2014
Les Editions de Minuit, publisher of Marguerite Duras and Alain Robbe-Grillet, rarely publishes a debut novel. Jean Echenoz, current star of this revered French literary house and enthusiastic fan of Julia Deck, confesses that he didn't send his first novel to Minuit because the publisher is "too demanding...too good for me." Yet thirty years later, a first novel published by Minuit has gripped French readers and taken the literary world by storm. Viviane is both an engrossing murder mystery and a gripping exploration of madness, a narrative that tests the shifting boundaries of language and the self. For inspiration, Deck read the work of another Minuit star, Samuel Beckett, because, as she says, "he positions himself within chaos and gives it coherence." This breakthrough novel, nominated for the Prix Femina, the Prix France Inter, and the Prix du Premier Roman, is sure to become a contemporary classic. Linda Coverdale, one of the most celebrated French translators working today, has created a faithful and propulsive English text that has been revised and approved by the author.
About the Author
Julia Deck was born in Paris in 1974, the daughter of a French father and a British mother. A graduate of the Sorbonne, she lives in Paris. This is her first novel. Linda Coverdale's most recent translation for The New Press was Jean Echenoz's 1914. She was the recipient of the French-American Foundation's 2008 Translation Prize and the 2004 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. She lives in Brooklyn.