My Life as a Russian Novel

A Memoir

Emmanuel Carrère; Translated by Linda Coverdale

Picador

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From the master of psychological suspense and the author of The Adversary comes “a work of infinite sorrow, infernal jealousy, and violent passion” (Le Monde). Set in Paris and Kotelnich, a small post-Soviet town, My Life as a Russian Novel traces Carrère’s pursuit of two obsessions—the disappearance of his Russian grandfather and his erotic fascination with a woman he loves but cannot keep from destroying. In prose that is elegant and passionate, Carrère weaves the strands of his story into a travelogue of a journey inward. Road trip, confession, and erotic tour de force—this fearless reckoning illuminates the schemes we devise to evade ourselves, and the inevitable payment they exact.

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Book Excerpts

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1

The train is humming along, it's nighttime, Sophie and I are making love in the berth and it really is her. In my erotic dreams, my partners are usually several women at once and difficult to identify, but this time, no: I recognize Sophie's voice, her words, her spread legs. In the sleeping car compartment where we have so far been alone, another couple turns up, the Fujimoris. Mme Fujimori hops right into bed with us. The entente is immediately cordiale, with much merriment. Supported by Sophie in an acrobatic position, I enter Mme Fujimori, who soon comes ecstatically.

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Reviews

Praise for My Life as a Russian Novel

“A captivating memoir that reads like a literary erotic-suspense novel.” —The Boston Globe

“Carrère brings the whole to sharp focus with a few jarring truths and a moment of great beauty. You leave its last pages with a deep appreciation for life.” —The Washington Post

“An elegant, emotional self-examination, full of bleak but truthful insights about the lies and compromises of love.” —The Times (London)

“Recalls Hitchcock and Calvino.” —Details

“Brims with ideas and incidents...Gripping and fascinating, an intimate portrait of a complicated man’s inner life and his struggles to find some kind of happiness and fulfillment.” —The Guardian (London)

“Even by the high standards set by his earlier books, Emmanuel Carrère’s My Life as A Russian Novel is a masterpiece, a searingly candid, breathtakingly beautiful exploration of territories both far and near: Russia and France; the past and the present; brutality and love; the inscrutable desires of the other and the often equally unfathomable motivations of the self. This is an unforgettable book from the most original, exciting, and important figure in contemporary French literature.”
—Caroline Weber, author of Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution
 
“Emmanuel Carrère has written a work of infinite sorrow, infernal jealousy, and violent passion. My Life as a Russian Novel dazzles.” —Le Monde
 
“An exceptional book in which the adversary, this time, is Carrère himself, revealed in a lucid, unflinching analysis…. Remarkable.” —Le Figaro

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About the Author

Emmanuel Carrère; Translated by Linda Coverdale

Emmanuel Carrère, novelist, filmmaker, journalist, and biographer, is the award-winning internationally renowned author of Class Trip, The Mustache, and The Adversary, a New York Times Notable Book. Carrère lives in Paris. 

Emmanuel Carrère

Helene Devynck
Emmanuel Carrère

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Available Formats and Book Details

My Life as a Russian Novel
A Memoir
Emmanuel Carrère; Translated by Linda Coverdale

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Picador
August 2011
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312569303
ISBN10: 0312569300
5 1/16 x 7 15/16 inches, 288 pages
$15.00

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Henry Holt and Co.
Metropolitan Books
August 2010
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429984249
ISBN10: 1429984244
288 pages
$7.99
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From The Publisher

Picador

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