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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Lives Other Than My Own

Lives Other Than My Own

A Memoir

Emmanuel Carrère; Translated from the French by Linda Coverdale



In Sri Lanka, a tsunami sweeps a child out to sea, her grandfather helpless against the onrushing water. In France, a woman dies from cancer, leaving her husband and small children bereft. What links these two catastrophes is the presence of Emmanuel Carrère, who manages to find consolation and even joy as he immerses himself in lives other than his own. The result is a heartrending narrative of endless love, a meditation on courage in the face of adversity, and an intimate look at the beauty of ordinary lives.


The night before the wave, I remember that Hélène and I talked about separating. It wouldn't be complicated; we didn't live together, hadn't had a child, and were even able to see ourselves remaining friends, and yet, it...

Praise for Lives Other Than My Own

“Gratifying and surprising…A book about the texture and resonance of loss…Carrère covers a lot of ground with cool honesty and careful humanity.” —Sally Singer, The New York Times, A Favorite Book of the Year

“A beguiling writer…Graceful and important.” —John Freeman, NPR

“In Lives Other Than My Own, Emmanuel Carrère demonstrates that empathy can be the antidote to alienation, if we try for it. With the finely measured assurance of Chekhov, he achieves something altogether unexpected in modern literature: beatitude.” —Gary Indiana, author of The Shanghai Gesture and Three Month Fever

“A powerful story of happiness wrenched from despair. Once the tempest has passed, words remain, and what words they are!” —Le Nouvel Observateur (France)

Reviews from Goodreads

Emmanuel Carrère; Translated from the French by Linda Coverdale

Emmanuel Carrère, novelist, filmmaker, journalist, and biographer, is the award-winning internationally renowned author of The Adversary (a New York Times Notable Book), Lives Other Than My Own, My Life As A Russian Novel, Class Trip and The Mustache. Carrère lives in Paris.

image of Emmanuel Carrèreo
Annie Samuelson

Emmanuel Carrère


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