Read Í trúnaði by Hélène Grémillon Online


Eftir að Camille missti móður sína streymdu umslög með samúðarkveðjum inn um bréfalúguna. Eitt umslagið er þykkt og í því langt bréf sem fjallar alls ekki um móðurina. Þetta er dularfullt og nafnlaust bréf og Camille er ekki viss um að það sé ætlar sér. Bréfin halda áfram að berast og smátt og smátt afhjúpa þau gamalt leyndarmál, sem stendur Camille nær en hún hélt í fyrstEftir að Camille missti móður sína streymdu umslög með samúðarkveðjum inn um bréfalúguna. Eitt umslagið er þykkt og í því langt bréf sem fjallar alls ekki um móðurina. Þetta er dularfullt og nafnlaust bréf og Camille er ekki viss um að það sé ætlar sér. Bréfin halda áfram að berast og smátt og smátt afhjúpa þau gamalt leyndarmál, sem stendur Camille nær en hún hélt í fyrstu.Sagan gerist á miklum umbrotatímum í Frakklandi og fjallar um heitar ástir, sérstök örlög og svikin loforð.Þessi fyrsta bók höfundar hefur hlotið fimm bókmenntaverðlaun og verið þýtt á 24 tungumál....

Title : Í trúnaði
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9879935454027
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 245 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Í trúnaði Reviews

  • Theresa
    2019-02-28 07:33

    A book that will stay with me for a long time. The themes (motherhood, love, betrayal, desperation, etc) touched upon in the book were very thought-provoking. Grémillon did a wonderful job of leading me to despise Madame M in the first portion of the book (Annie's portion) and then within the first few pages of Madame M's portion, I found myself not only sympathizing with her, but understanding her.One thing I think Grémillon did especially well was to make me think on that saying from childhood: There are always two sides to the same story. Or, perhaps more perspectives, but the point remains that you really don't know everything about a story or situation until you hear the stories from all involved. And even then, you must consider whether the teller has omitted or changed details for their own reasons.

  • Erin
    2019-03-06 04:55

    Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....Ugh. I had such high hopes for Helene Grémillon's The Confidant, but this book didn't work for me at all. From the first pages I struggled with this one, pushing myself to finish it for the sole purpose of being able to say it didn't kick my ass.To be fair part the problem has to do with my reasons for picking up the book in the first place. I routinely browse the New Release shelves at my local library and got really excited when I discovered what appeared in part to be a WWII era story set in occupied France. I love the time period and couldn't resist bringing the book home with me. Unfortunately the aspects I'd looked forward to the most were largely trivialized. The story is so character driven that the conflict fades to the background. Where I'd hoped for hard hitting historic fiction I got a melodrama set in Paris during the 1930s and 40s. Once I realized my error, I tried to to judge the book on what it is rather than what I hoped it would be, but here too I had tremendous difficulty. Despite the provocative situational drama, the characters are extraordinarily thin. I couldn't relate to them which made it practically impossible to rouse much interest in their respective fates. The nail in the coffin, however, was the style in which The Confidant is written. I don't know if it suffers the same issues in the original French, but the English translation lacks any sort of transition between character point of view or time period. Honestly I spent half my reading struggling to determine who was talking and to what period of the story their narrative referred. I wanted a novel I could get lost in, not one that made me fight for every inch, but that is exactly what I had to do with this book. Not one I enjoyed and one I would be exceedingly hard pressed to recommend.

  • Jane
    2019-03-20 05:30

    I wasn’t at all sure about The Confidant when I first picked it up. I was happy with the prospect of a story set in wartime France, but I was a little worried that the story was told through a series of anonymous letters in the 1970s. Wasn’t that just a little bit contrived?Maybe, but the opening won me over.I got a letter one day, a long letter that wasn’t signed. This was quite an event because I’ve never received much mail in my life. My letter box had never done more than inform me that the sea was warm or that the snow was good, so I didn’t open it very often. Once a week, maybe twice in a gloomy week, when I hoped that s letter would suddenly change my life completely and utterly, like a telephone call can, or a trip on the métro, or closing my eyes and counting to ten before opening them again.And then my mother died. And that was plenty, as far as changing my life went: you’re mother’s death, you can’t get much better than that …Suddenly that premise made sense. A story that could only be told once certain of the protagonists were dead. I found myself liking Camille. She was bereaved, she was pregnant, and she was none to sure what she was going to do.The letters told the story of a boy and a girl who had grown up in the same village. Louis and Annie. First they were friends and then they were sweethearts. They might have lived happily ever after.But then Monsieur and Madame M settled in the village. Annie was a talented artist and Madame M noticed her, encouraged her, took her under her wing. They grew close. And when Annie discovered the source of Madame M’s sadness – that she could not carry a child – she offered to carry one for her.It was an extraordinary offer. And it was accepted.The relationship between Annie and Monsieur M, that was supposed to be dispassionate turned into a passionate love affair. Madame M saw that. She was jealous, she was angry, and she wanted revenge. Monsieur M was caught up in the war and the two women were left with the child. Both of them wanted to be her mother but only one of them could.The story was melodramatic and not entirely believable. And yet it worked, because the emotions were so strong and because they rang so very true.And because it was told so very cleverly, with Louis sending letters and pages from Annie’s journal, and with Camille reading and wondering what it all meant.Was it a badly misjudged joke? She worked in publishing – could it be an extraordinary pitch for a novel? Or was it real? And if it was real what did that mean about her identity, about the mother she had lost?The first half of the book had me captivated. I was first charmed and then gripped by the story. And I was asking the same questions that Camille was asking herself.The story twisted and turned and I kept changing my mind. The tension grew. Such clever writing.In time, of course, Camille that she was being told a true story, that she was being told for a reason, and she studied the letters for clues to what that reason might be, where she might find the sender.She thought she had him pinned down. And then a package arrived. The journal of Madame M.It told the same story from a different perspective, and with some telling differences. I wondered who – if anyone was reliable – and I really couldn’t decide. But I appreciated that there was no black and white, only shades of grey, and that there would be no easy resolution for Camille.I found a great deal to think about: friendship, love, passion, motherhood, jealousy, revenge, war, regret, consequences …The writing was uneven and there was always a hint of contrivance, but I believed in the characters and their relationships, and I thought the plotting was very well done.The ending was very well judged.And, though the story was flawed, I am still thinking about it …

  • Shannon (Giraffe Days)
    2019-03-16 02:30

    After the death of her mother, Camille Werner is going through the condolence letters when she comes across a letter that is rather strange. First of all, it's not addressed to her - the envelope is, but the contents aren't. There's no return address. And it doesn't read like a letter, but embarks on a story. The writer, Louis, tells of meeting and befriending Annie as a child in the village of N. in 1933. He was twelve, Annie was ten, and the world was changing.Camille thinks at first that the letters have been addressed to her by mistake, that there must be someone else in Paris with the same name as her - but she can't find one. The letters keep arriving, the story keeps unfolding. Louis moves forward in time, to meeting Annie again in 1943, when she tells him what really happened with Madame and Monsieur M, a young bourgeois couple who move into a big house in the middle of the town.Annie becomes a frequent visitor to Madame M, who encourages her passion for painting. But when Annie is fifteen she leaves for Paris with the couple; Madame's husband, Paul, a journalist, later joins the war effort and is sent to the front. Louis tells Annie's side of the story, and as it unfolds Camille becomes more invested in discovering who Louis is, and what it all has to do with her. Louis reveals one truth, and then another, the words of Madame M, but it is Camille herself who comes to understand the last, shattering, heart-breaking piece.There is a lot to recommend French author Grémillon's debut novel, which is on the surface of things a simple, even predictable story of a family secret and the lives it affected. Touching on themes of motherhood, social pressure and identity, as well as the damage that lies, secrets and betrayals can inflict, this is a realistic, deeply human story taking place against the backdrop of Germany's invasion and occupation of France.Divided into two parallel time frames, 1975 and the 30s and 40s, the focus is on the past, with the "present" scenes of Camille's life sketched out with telling details that flesh out her character and her life - she's fallen pregnant by a man who doesn't want children, and decides to keep it; she's lost both her parents and has only her brother, Pierre, left; and she works as an editor at a publishing house. Grémillon employs a "less is more" tactic with Camille's side of the story, ensuring that Louis' story takes centre stage and doesn't get overshadowed by anything from the "present"; in fact, I sometimes forgot all about Camille, which actually made it easy to switch between the two. The book also used the visual device of drastically different fonts - Camille's first-person sections were set in something like Arial, while Louis' letters were in your standard bookish font (much easier on the eyes, too).The parallels between what Camille's going through in her own life, and the events that unfold in Louis' story, allow Camille - and the reader - to empathise with both Annie and Madame M (you won't be able to sympathise with Madame M until you hear her side of the story, but it will come). The theme of motherhood and the pressures not just of society but from our own selves, is a strong one throughout. As Camille says,I used to think abortion was a good thing: progress, a woman's free will... Now I find myself struggling in a trap which, like every trap, once smelled sweetly, in this case of freedom. Progress for women, my arse! If I keep the child, I'm guilty vis-à-vis Nicolas, who doesn't want it. If I get rid of it, I am guilty vis-à-vis the baby. Abortion may claim to rescue women from the slavery of motherhood, but it imposes another form of slavery: guilt. More than ever, it is on our own that we handle or mishandle motherhood. [p.89]Through this lens we watch Annie, at fifteen years old, offer to be a surrogate for the baby Madame M has spent years trying to have, having put herself through treatments both bizarre and extreme. For much of the book, I didn't find the outcome necessarily predictable, because it seemed, for quite some time, that the truth could go either way. Still, if you go into this expecting a clever mystery you will probably be disappointed - this isn't so much a puzzle to solve, even though that's the structure of it, as it is a tragic story of two women in isolation, wanting the same thing, ready to do something extreme to get it. It is this human story that really reaches deep and holds you fast to the book; in fact, it's a quick and riveting read, one you can easily read in a day if you have the time.Where the novel suffered a bit was in the writing; for a debut novel, it's good, and yet it's also a bit of a mess at times. I got the feeling the translator made an effort to stick to a literal translation as much as possible, rather than doing the extra twist of interpretation to make things work better in English. Take this paragraph, for instance, telling us the story of what happened to Annie's father while she was in Paris with Madame M:On 3 June 1940, the guards had thrown them into the prison courtyard. The government didn't want them to fall into German hands. The Germans would have released them for sure. Ever since the Treaty of Non-Aggression between Germany and the Soviet Union, the Communists had been in the Boches' good books. They were being moved to another prison, they had to walk quickly, the guards were hitting them, shouting at them. It was late morning, they were on their way through Paris, when a guard suddenly pushed him out of the group and told him to get the hell out of there and fast, opportunity never knocks twice at anyone's door. They had let him go, and he still could not fathom why, but he was free, that was all that mattered. [pp.102-3]This made absolutely no sense to me when I was reading the book, and when Annie says to Louis in the retelling, "His story made no sense to me at all" I was relieved - only, she meant that she couldn't believe her parents had become separated; that was her sticking point. Even later, after finally understanding that he had been locked up because he'd once been a member of the Communist Party, the passage doesn't really make sense. It skips over his arrest, which is key to understanding the passage, since the last we saw of him he was living in his own home with his wife. It also skips over the fact that it was the French who'd arrested him, and why it was a crime. For the sake of context, these are small details that could easily have been included to prevent me from getting a headache.Aside from some odd phrasing, and the kind of writing mistakes that are pretty basic but hard to say whom they belong to, author or translator, the prose was very readable and skips along at a merry pace. Sometimes things don't make sense at the time, because certain details have been left out which are revealed later on for a "A-HA!" moment, but when the narration is following a continuous, chronological story-telling pattern, it's smooth and riveting.It was quite refreshing to have the war in the background rather than the foreground - it wasn't about the war at all, there just happened to be a war at the time these characters were living their lives. Yet it's not an incidental war: it impacts the characters, and adds a level of tension and atmosphere that gives events an extra layer of fear and uncertainty.The ending was what really got to me, when reading this book. After reading the last few lines, I actually sat up straight, looked up and said something like "Oh wow." I'd become so caught up in the story of Annie and Madame M, that I hadn't been thinking of the present day, or the possibility that Louis was wrong about what happened to Annie. I love that feeling, when something comes out of nowhere and hits you on the head (not literally - I don't enjoy being hit on the head by anything!), giving you one of those "ahhhhh" moments of satisfaction at a story well ended.Even before that, though, I enjoyed the murky greyness of Annie and Madame M's stories. Neither is a bad or a good woman. They are human, and they are mothers, and the moral murkiness of it all is both thought-provoking and entertaining (not in the sense that I enjoyed it at their expense, but in the sense that I enjoy having my conscience engaged as much as my intellect). I'd love to go into details, but I didn't want to give away any more of the plot than my edition's blurb did, lest I spoil the reading experience for anyone else.For all its sometimes-confusing narration, The Confidant was a haunting and emotional - but not at all melodramatic - exploration into the hearts of women who yearn for a child, and the lengths they'll go to to have that child, love it and protect it, all told against the backdrop of a war that took the lives of millions of people, and the French government's public announcements that the people have a duty to have more children.

  • Anita
    2019-03-07 05:42

    The plot of this book seemed quite interesting at first, but I just could not bring myself to like this book.Yes, the way the author had handled the different points of view were interesting.Yes, the historical events were quite accurate, and interestingYes, the plot seemed interesting.Here is where it all fell apart! The language was messy, and whenever there was a change of POV it was often unclear to me which of the characters were actually narrating. It might be that the translated Norwegian version of the book had a hand in messing up thelanguage, but I can't say for sure. It ruined the flow of the story for me at least.Worst however was the infinite stupidity of the characters in the book. There was such a total lack of communication and honesty between all of them on every possible emotional level that I kept wanting to scream at them and toss the book away. Maybe there are people who are so dysfunctional out there that they are unable to properly communicate with anybody, but for all of the characters in the entire book to lack that exact same ability seems idiotic to me.No one seems capable of telling the truth until after they are dead or before it's too late.It simply annoyed me to no end.

  • Marisa
    2019-02-25 02:46

    I really liked this book and I was feeling as if it would be a solid four-star novel, and then... wow! The very last paragraph came along and it earned that last star for an awesome conclusion. I was thinking that it was going to finish in the conventionally predictable manner but I was so wrong. I actually didn't see that coming. Sure, elements of the conclusion were not completely unexpected, but the very end was just brilliant. I really liked the change in perspective among the characters. They were all so different, and I loved how they all revealed the various aspects of the story until it came together clearly. At times it was horrific and tragic, but ultimately somewhat uplifting in an strange kind of way. I ended up really liking the Louis character (of course) and hoping the rest of them could just be better people than they really were. Fortunately, this is fiction, but the story is compelling enough that it's easy to forget that, at least for a little while.

  • Melody (theliteraryowl)
    2019-03-01 01:34

    I finished this one last night and I can't stop thinking about it. The story and the characters are still haunting me even though I closed the book. I think this is one of my new favorites.

  • Karen
    2019-03-05 03:39

    What will an hopelessly deranged and infertile Frenchwoman do to have her own child? Everything.I received my ARC of The Confidant from First Reads. What initially piqued my interest was how reviewers compared the novel to Sarah's Key; and having read and enjoyed that novel, I hoped to catch myself reading about drama and mystery set against the backdrop of WWII in France. The Confidant is similar to Sarah's Key in the way that they are both set on the same stage, and both writers organized their stories by jumping back and forth between two timelines/stories. That said, The Confidant–filled with feelings of lust, betrayal, and atonement–deals more with the personal afflictions of the characters as they seek their desires, and hide from their demons.Louis, a man tangled in an unfortunate triangle, writes a series of letters to publisher Camille; urging her to understand her complicated beginnings. Throughout the story, Camille unravels the mysterious and ultimately fatal relationship between the two women who claim to be her true mother. What begins as a harmless wish turns in to a string of lies, and masterfully concocted plans that destroys the lives of Annie and Elisabeth. This was a pleasant, short read fit for anyone interested in this genre. While the writing was not as smooth as I hoped it to be in some places, The Confidant still has a masterfully woven plot that is sure to keep readers flipping quickly until the end.

  • Ingrid Fasquelle
    2019-03-14 02:42

    Hélène Grémillon signe un premier roman admirablement maîtrisé. Elle y aborde de manière touchante et audacieuse le thème difficile de la maternité et des femmes en mal d'enfant. Le Confident est un drame psychologique méticuleusement construit, sur fond de seconde guerre mondiale. C'est un roman à tiroirs, qui se lit comme une intrigue policière et va de révélation en révélation. Jouant la carte du mystère avec talent, l'auteure exploite brillamment le contexte historique et jongle avec le style épistolaire et la narration à la première personne. Elle délivre une confession troublante, un étrange récit auquel le lecteur ne peut que succomber, et explore avec subtilité et une violence non dissimulée les zones d'ombre d'une histoire familiale aussi complexe que sordide..."J'ai toujours pensé que les secrets doivent mourir avec ceux qui les ont portés. Vous vous dites sûrement que je trahis mes propres convictions puisque je vous en parle, mais à vous, je dois tout dire."Difficile d'en dire plus sans en dévoiler l'intrigue ! Le style fluide d'Hélène Grémillon, sa plume simple et agréable, la façon dont elle a entremêlé la réalité historique à la fiction et l'exactitude du contexte historique qu'elle exploite font du Confident un roman saisissant, presque impossible à lâcher ! Dès les premières pages, le lecteur se sent happé ! La lecture devient fébrile, frénétique ! Fi des contingences matérielles, plus rien n'importe au lecteur que de tourner les pages, savoir, coûte que coûte, ce qui s'est passé durant ces années, pendant lesquelles le destin de quatre personnes aura été irrémédiablement bouleversé ! Commence alors, pour Camille comme pour le lecteur, un jeu de piste où tout apparaît brouillé, une quête identitaire d'où la vérité, lugubre, sordide et terrifiante, finira par éclater..."Je n’imaginais pas un seul instant ce qui m’attendait. L’impensable, ça existe, j’en suis la preuve."Habilement, Hélène Grémillon alterne les points de vue, renverse les situations et redistribue la culpabilité. Le lecteur est sans cesse ébranlé dans son jugement et ses convictions ! Derrière le drame, l'amour perdu et les secrets, il y a le mensonge, la jalousie maladive et l'envie irrépressible et dévastatrice de posséder à tout prix ce que l'on ne peut s'offrir... Et puis, il y a ces vies, gâchées, brisées, et ces êtres humains dont les agissements et les sentiments feront vaciller les convictions et les certitudes ancrées au plus profond de chacun d'entre nous...Le Confident est un roman fort, pesant, éprouvant. Un roman psychologique qui fait froid dans le dos et dérange comme un thriller. On n'aimerait lire que des premiers romans de cette trempe !

  • LJ
    2019-02-28 00:38

    First Sentence: I got a letter one day, a long letter that wasn’t signed.Camille Warner is in publishing, pregnant, abandoned by her lover, and sorting through condolences from her mother’s death. One letter, much thicker than the rest, stands out not only for its size, but its lack of either salutation or signature and seems to be part of a story. As more segments arrive, Camille is curious, thinking perhaps it’s an author looking to be published, then intrigued as the characters begin to be identified. As the story evolves, Camille realizes just how personal the story is.In the beginning, it’s not easy to identify which narrator is speaking when. Usually, I find this highly annoying. I don’t, however, believe the story really would not have worked any other way. I also realized that, after only a few pages, I was so immersed in the story, I didn’t mind. In the beginning, there were a few portents—always a major flaw in my view—but even those, I forgive.The author’s/character’s voice, with the help of her translator, immediately drew me in. Her writing is punctuated with small truths that are both illuminating and disturbing…”As the curtain fluttered closed I thought of how once the last survivor of a family is dead, there is no one left to receive letters of condolence.” and “It is not other people who inflict the worse disappointments, but the shock between reality and the extravagance of our imagination.” I shan’t tell you any more about the characters beyond my summary above. Learning who they are, reading their stories as they unfold and learning how the relationships intertwine is all integral to the plot itself. It should not be spoiled. The story is set in two time periods; the 1975 present and the years before WWII. I appreciated learning of the milestones in history leading up to the war and seeing the European—in this case French—perspective of events. In some ways, the notions as to how women conceive and remedies for infertility were more disturbing as they were more immediate to the story.This is a story within a story, within a story, within a story. I was drawn in immediately and kept turning the pages to the very end. Whatever you do, DO NOT cheat and read the ending, particularly the poem, until you reach it in its proper time. “The Confidant” is a very compelling book I do highly recommend reading. THE CONFIDANT (Novel-Camille-France-Contemp/1940s) - ExGremillon, Helen – Alison Anderson, Translator - StandalonePenguin Books, 2012

  • Suze Lavender
    2019-03-09 02:49

    It's 1975 and Camille has just lost her mother. Between her condolence mail she receives a letter from a man called Louis. He's writing a story which starts in the years just before the second World War, but Camille has no idea why he's writing to her. Louise writes about a woman called Annie, who was the love of his life ever since they were children. They were having a wonderful time, but then Annie became with someone a few years older than her called Madame M. Madame M. encourages her to paint and at first their friendship is wonderful. Madame M. has one wish and that is to have a child, but she isn't able to conceive. Annie offers to help her by carrying a child for her. Madame M. agrees with this plan, but it's the question if it's really such a wise plan... Annie's friendship with Madame M. has never been an equal one. Madame M. is older, has seen more of the world and she's a lot richer. She's married to a good man, but they can't have any children. She and Annie come up with a plan to make a pregnancy happen, but both women haven't foreseen the consequences. Louis is telling this story to Camille, so the reader knows it has already happened, but not why he's writing to her. I found that such an interesting way to write a book. I love the idea and think the execution is amazing. Hélène Grémillon is a fantastic writer and she makes the story come to life really well.I could feel the heartache and the despair as it was dripping from the pages, but it was never too much or too heavy. I was constantly curious and couldn't wait to find out what would happen to the two women and the baby that was so wanted. I read the story with tears in my eyes. It was gripping from the beginning and I read it in one sitting, because I couldn't put it down. I had to know how the story would end and why Louis was writing the letters. The Confidant is thrilling, fascinating and emotional. I highly recommend this book, it's unusual and very special.

  • Pia
    2019-02-24 01:32

    This is a dual timeline novel, that alternates between 1975 and the years before-during-after WWII.In 1975, in Paris, Camille has just lost her mother when she receives a long, unsigned letter. She tries to find the anonymous sender to no avail, and she keeps getting letters about a woman named Annie and a man called Louis, describing their lives during the Second WW. Somehow, she feels this must be related to her, but doesn't understand why or how.I thought I'd had my share of WWII books, but this one reads as a mystery, which happens to be one of my favorite genres, and although it speaks of the horrors of the war (no way not to mention them), it's more about the people.It's also about Camille and the decisions she will make with her life, and how the letters influence her 30 years later after the events the letters narrate.Great book, beautifully written and translated.I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  • Eveline
    2019-03-12 01:46

    3.5 sterren, apart boek maar voor mij was het niet altijd direct duidelijk welk karakter het woord nam, waardoor het wat slordig overkwam.

  • Miss Précipitation
    2019-03-08 01:52


  • Aglaja
    2019-02-25 02:53

    Huch, das war ein Hammer-Hörbuch! Ich habe die 6 CDs wie nichts gehört. Mal abgeshen davon, dass es sehr gut vorgelesen wird, ist die Handlung unheimlich spannend und gut gebaut, psychologisch auch sehr gut nachvollziehbar. Es wird noch eine Weile nach hallen ...

  • Bianca
    2019-02-26 00:28

    Confidentul este romanu de debut al autoarei de origine franceză Hélène Grémillon. Un debut foarte reușit, dacă e să mă întrebați. Un roman credibil, plin de suspans, dar în același timp, o lectură plăcută și relaxantă.

  • Shaz Goodwin
    2019-02-24 06:52

    Throughout The Confidant, each main character narrates in the first person. Camille is the only narrator in present time (Paris 1975) and the story weaves and builds as we become a part of each narrator’s perspective.In Paris 1975, Camille has been opening letters of condolence after the death of her mother. It is in amongst those letters that the first ‘letter’ from Louis arrives. Interspersed through the letters we spend time with Camille, finding out details about her life. Camille is a publisher and at first thinks the letters may have been sent from an author who knows a manuscript wouldn’t be read for a long time. As the story progresses, Camille starts to intuit where she fits into the tale that is being told.From Louis we find out about Annie and her place in his life since childhood. The reader is also a part of their reunion in German occupied Paris in 1945. The next perspective is from Annie herself. We find out how Madame M became a part of her life, the fateful day of Madame M’s confession and her poignant role of confidant. Annie’s narrative is heartbreaking in places. From this I had made up my mind how I felt about Madame M. However, the final narrative from Madame M herself fills in and overlaps the previous characters stories and her revelations give us knowledge we didn’t have previously. Knowing the truth adds a host of different emotions and makes the reader reflect on what is already known to modify those beliefs.Besides the emotional journey, the descriptions of the places are written in such a way that they come to life. For example Annie wondering the streets of occupied Paris are amazing. I could feel myself with her, dazed and confused. Louis and Annie out after curfew felt so real as well. I feel as if I have spent time in France both in villages and the city!The Confidant is an honest portrayal of a young girl’s desire to help without having the maturity to have thought her decision through in reality. It’s a story of social expectations and a mature woman’s deep-seated need to fit in with them … and the fear and doubt that accompanies any intimate relationship that doesn’t fulfil societies expectations. It is an emotional journey that builds up layer upon layer and affects future generations. This is a debut novel I definitely recommend for your bookshelf.The Confidant is translated from French by Alison Anderson.I would like to thank Gallic Books for offering The Confidant for review via Twitter.

  • Rebecca Graf
    2019-03-03 07:31

    The Confidant by Helene Gremillon was a very interesting read. I have to admit that I was a little confused at first as I began reading but quickly the plot came together and I found myself enjoying this story immensely.It is the story of a young woman whose mother has passed away. She is in the process of selling her parents’ home and getting closure on her life. During this process, she finds herself the recipient of several strange letters. Each week she received a letter telling a story that unfolds to be more than just a story. It becomes something very real.Camille reads of how a young girl agrees to be a surrogate mother for a wealthy woman in pre-war France. It begins so straightforward but soon all parties involved find out that nothing is as simple as life. Each one finds there is more to it than anything they imagined.This is a very powerful story that is extremely well written. I found myself not wanting to put it down. I had to know who was sending the letters and why. The plot was not straight forward. There were twists and turns all the way through it until the very last sentence that took my breath away.There are graphic descriptions within the book as detailed are revealed to Camille of intimate encounters. They are not many present. Just a few that take up a couple of pages. It is a translation from the original book that was written in French a few decades ago.This is a great book for a book club and one that you will enjoy having in your library. If you want something more than the run of the mill book, this is one you should have. I highly recommend it for your summer reading list.Note: This book was provided by the publisher without expectation of a positive review.

  • Oceantide74
    2019-03-13 04:48

    I don't really know how to rate this book. I must have liked it if I read it in 2 days but it was so disturbing. I found it hard to like any of the characters and I found the background of WWII to be trivialized which bothered me. It was hard to follow at times between the different narrators and time periods. The ending was confusing and I found myself looking back in the pages for the clues I missed. Perhaps the book flowed better in French.

  • Laurent
    2019-03-15 00:50

    C'est l'histoire d'une femme qui raconte l'histoire d'un homme qui raconte l'histoire d'une femme qui raconte l'histoire d'une fille.En résumé, un récit à tiroirs déséquilibré, dont on perd le long des pages à la fois le fil et l'intérêt.

  • Clarabel
    2019-03-15 00:31

    Cette lecture est vivante, passionnante et stupéfiante. Elle m'a entraînée dans une partie de cache-cache démoniaque, sur fond de guerre, d'identité, de maternité, de folie et d'absolutisme. Une réussite !

  • Andrea Andrei
    2019-03-06 08:34

    Oricat s-ar spune, ura, la fel ca si dragostea, nu e de nepotolit.

  • Hymaya
    2019-03-10 02:36

    J'ai beaucoup aimé ce roman découvert sur les conseils d'un membre du #ClubdelectureMS .Dès les premières pages, le récit est mystérieux et particulièrement prenant. A mon avis, il s'essouffle un peu par la suite, mais l'ensemble est tout de même très réussi.J'ai beaucoup aimé cette histoire assez sombre, sur fond de seconde guerre mondiale (une période sur laquelle j'aime beaucoup lire).L'écriture est brillante. C'est assez difficile à expliquer, mais l'alternance des points de vue des personnages donne au lecteur des éclairages sur des détails de l'histoire que chacun des personnages pris individuellement n'a pas.J'ai trouvé que ce roman donne vraiment à réfléchir sur les conséquences de ses actes, et il a résonné en moi un bon moment après la fin de ma lecture.Je recommande vivement, même si ce n'est pas vraiment gai.

  • Chelsey Wolford
    2019-03-11 01:51

    I found this story to be raw and eloquently powerful. It is written in the form of letters being sent to our main character, Camille. But after finishing the story, I am not so confident who the main character really is in this book. Whose story was this? I am feeling so many things and really am holding back tears and ten other emotions at the same time. I became so wrapped up in this story and was literally on the edge of my seat, waiting to find out if my speculations from the beginning were correct. Very well written! I almost felt like this story was a song; it was that beautiful.We are taken back and forth between the past and the present with Camille and her mystery “Louis,” whom she keeps receiving these strange letters from. He is telling her a story of his first love, Annie, from years ago, and Camille is constantly trying to understand how this has anything to do with her. Camille, being a book editor, thinks at first that this is some clever man’s way of getting her to read his transcript. As the story progresses Camille, as well as the reader, begin to find out that these letters may actually be connected to Camille’s life in a very deep and personal way.Louis’ story was the most passionate and romantic story that I believe I have ever heard. I could hear this older man’s voice in my head so clearly as I read each new letter that Camille received. He spared no small details and was sure to cover every nook and cranny for the reader and for Camille. I could feel the endearing and undying love that he felt for Annie and it literally gave me chills. This man was really in love with this woman and he did everything in his power to protect and keep her for as long as he could. This is like a Mr. Darcy character, and oh how I love those! The love story behind The Confidant depicts what I picture to be a real life love story and truly draws the reader in and has them hanging on each and every word. So wonderfully told. It was almost as if I was not even reading a book at all, but rather listening to a man tell me a story.Both stories took place in France, Camille’s and Louis’. We didn’t see or hear much from Camille until the very end, and at first I was saddened by this, but I soon realized that it was all part of our author’s plan. I loved the setting and hearing of France during the war with some added details about what was happening with Hitler and his Nazi Regime. I pictured the cobblestoned streets of Paris and beautiful Parisian men and women. I was totally captured and swept away in this story and cannot even begin to tell you how powerful it is. I do not want to spoil any details for anyone. I highly suggest you all go and pick up your own copy!***Thank you to the publishers at Penguin for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review***

  • Lynne
    2019-03-03 06:31

    This is a sol 3.5 - almost 4 star read.My second Hélène Grémillon novel - and I can definitely see a pattern to her storytelling.This is the story of Camille, who's mother has just died and in the stack of condolence cards she receives a rather strange letter - unsigned (although the envelope does have a name on it, Louis) and very confusing. It's about a girl named Annie and her relationship with a wealthy woman (Elisabeth) who is unable to get pregnant. Annie offers to get pregnant so that Elisabeth will have her baby and save her marriage. The first batch of letters (received in increments every Tuesday) are told by Louis as Annie had told him the story. Then Elisabeth shares her version of the same events with Louis - and that is how the story really comes to life.Elisabeth re-tells us information we already know (which could be tedious, but Grémillon doesn't allow the story to lag) and then expands. We get greater depth, she isn't afraid to appear the "bad person" in the story - she simply wants Louis to set the facts straight. The story that unfolds is of love and betrayal, desire and hatred. We get the other side of the story that Annie hinted at in her account - only Annie doesn't come out as innocent as she made herself out to be.Grémillon excels at the ending of a book - everything you have taken at face value then is flipped on its side and becomes so much more. The last 5 pages shocked me and brought everything perfectly together. Had there not been a lag between Annie and Elisabeth's accounts, I think this would have been a solid 4 star read.Good character development, good story, well told. Really well translated.Recommended.

  • Leila
    2019-03-02 01:30

    It is hard for me to rate this book with only two stars.This book got me interested because the main story is set in Paris, and during WWII, which I find the most interesting era because there is always something new to find out (or to be appalled at). So, I can almost say that I hated the first part of the book. Writing was awful. All the sentences sounded the same, they were so monotonous, without any indication of feelings. I hated the characters. Annie was immature girl. And then there was annoying, awful, evil Madame M. And her husband, of whom you'll find nothing about in the whole book. After real suffering with reading this book, there came part with Madame M.'s point of view, which I found much more interesting, deeper and more passionate. Yes, she was horrible. She was mean. She was evil! And in my opinion, no amount of love justifies her acts, and everything she has done. But she seemed like the only alive character in the whole book! This part shows how quick to judge we are, and, to find out the real truth (if it even exists), how lucky you have to be, to meet someone who doesn't have to change the story to protect himself. Madame M.'s part of the story is horrifying. It was pretty hard to read about her feelings; sorrow, anger, fear, love... It shows us how there's always so much more to the story. This part of the book gives you insight to the whole story, and it is up to you to decide whether hard life justifies evil acts or not. The idea of the story is moving, and it will shake you to the core. But, God, the writing! It is awful. Awful! I can't bring myself to rate it higher because most of the book was so annoying to read. Fascinating story, but I've been really struggling with it.

  • Charlotte
    2019-03-22 01:48

    J'ai commandé ce livre un peu au hasard et il attendait depuis des semaines sur mon étagère. C'est aussi au hasard que je l'ai choisi pour le commencer.Et je l'ai commencé, et pas lâché.J'ai aimé les différents points de vue qui se succèdent avec à chaque fois de nouveaux détails ajoutés à l'histoire. Ce livre m'a tenu en haleine, je voulais absolument savoir ce qui se passait ensuite.Et la fin ! J'ai adoré ! Je ne m'y attendait absolument pas ! Un roman que je conseille à tous !

  • Kathy Ginocchio
    2019-02-22 03:35

    This little book intrigued me and kept me riveted from start to finish. It's actually kind of haunting me, as several days have gone by since I finished and I keep finding myself wondering, did I really understand that book? And the ending? One of those WOAH moments. I thought for sure I could see where it was going and then BAM! Love those!This is one of those books that jumps back and forth between time periods, but I found the device quite appropriate. The story is basically about a woman in the 1970's who, after receiving a series of mysterious letters, begins to unravel a mystery set back during World War II. Each letter unveils a little more of the mystery and, eventually she realizes she is one of the key players in the events that are being described. Frankly, I didn't care nearly as much about the reader of the letters as about the characters whose drama was unfolding before me in each letter. It's a story of love and betrayal and motherhood and the lengths women will go to achieve all of those. The backdrop of World War II just emphasizes the craziness and the desperate behavior of the times. This is a short, gripping read, elegantly written, quirky and gritty - highly recommend!

  • Stef Eleane
    2019-03-17 05:34

    Un livre très bien construit. J'ai aimé l'approche de l'auteur, qui pour faire éclater la vérité, nous fera intervenir 3 protagonistes. Celle de Louis, d'Annie et d'Elisabeth (la femme, l'amant et le jeune homme amoureux éconduit). A tel point que nous passons d'un personnage que l'on va exécrer à un autre….La dualité de ces deux femmes pour l'amour d'un homme et surtout d'un enfant est très belle et horrible en même temps ! Mais pour moi une question reste en suspens …Louis était-il un pion auprès d'Annie ou avait-il une importance dans son cœur ?? Car plus on en apprend sur l'une ou sur l'autre et plus on se dit qu'il y a un coté machiavélique chez ces deux femmes ..C'est un roman qui vous fait réfléchir car il est lourd de sens .Jusqu'où peut-on aller quand on a le désir de devenir mère, que peut-on faire pour sauver sa femme et que peut-on accepter par amour ..Et la seconde guerre mondiale en second plan ne fait rien pour alléger l'atmosphère de cette histoire.

  • Annie
    2019-03-05 03:57

    One of the most challenging ethical dilemmas I’ve ever come across is two parents battling over custody of a child when both have near equal claims. Like The Light Between Oceans, The Confidant by Hélène Grémillon is the judgment of Solomon all over again. On the one hand, I think the person who gave birth to the child—barring abuse—has a right to parent that child. On the other hand, once the child has bonded with another person, is is right and fair to take the child away and give them to a stranger? The matter is even more complicated in The Confidant because Grémillon’s characters are wrestling with love and betrayal and war on top of their battle for protagonist Camille Werner’s loyalty...Read the rest of my review at A Bookish Type. I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review consideration.