Arrested for snorting cocaine off a car bonnet, award-winning author and quintessential dilettante Frederic Beigbeder reflects on his troubled childhood, while spending a night in the cells. In his most autobiographical book to date, the author of the award-winning 'Windows on the World' recounts his stay in police custody, when in January 2008 he was arrested for snorting cocaine outside a Paris nightclub. As he lies in his cell, he revisits his childhood, from the carefree days when his grandfather taught him to skim pebbles at the beach in Cenitz, to his parents' divorce; the conflicting influences of his hedonistic father and his studious, seemingly conventional brother. And then Beigbeder recalls his first, unrequited loves. This patchwork of memories is as much a portrait of the era as it is the story of a fragile, self-critical man who has finally dropped the mask. Witty, sharp, with a pitiless, self-deprecating irony, and yet tender and true, 'A French Novel' is a gem. Beigbeder's search for answers in the lost country of his childhood will speak to a whole generation searching for its soul.
From the reviews of 'Windows on the World': 'Powerful ... the combination of banality and panic is quietly devastating. Affecting and disconcerting' Financial Times 'Beigbeder has set himself a mammoth task. Foreknowledge of the outcome removes any narrative tension and reality has outstripped fiction. Given these constraints, the author is remarkably successful.' Sunday Express 'Beigbeder brings this off thanks to his electrifying intelligence and vaulting leaps of sympathy with all the victims - in the tower, the planes, and the unjust world beyond New York.' Independent
Frederic Beigbeder was born in 1965 and lives in Paris. He works as a publisher, literary critic and broadcaster.