One of Europe’s most popular and best-loved authors, Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt captivates the reader with his spirited, buoyant style and enchanting stories that move effortlessly from the everyday to the fantastical. The eight stories in this collection, his first to be published in English, represent some of his best writing and most imaginative storylines: from the love story between Balthazar, wealthy and successful author, and Odette, cashier at a supermarket, to the tale of a barefooted princess; from the moving story of a group of female prisoners in a Soviet gulag to the entertaining portrait of a perennially disgruntled perfectionist. Here are eight contemporary fables, populated by a cast of extravagant and affecting characters, about people in search of happiness. Behind each story lies a simple, if elusive, truth: happiness is often right in front of our eyes, though we may frequently be blind to it.
Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt is one of Europe’s most popular and acclaimed authors and playwrights. His many novels and story collections include The Most Beautiful Book in the World (Europa, 2009), Oscar & the Lady in Pink, and Monsieur Ibrahim and the Flowers of the Koran. A keen music lover, Schmitt has also translated into French The Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni from the original Italian. In 2001, he was awarded the French Academy’s Grand Prix du Théâtre. Schmitt divides his time between Paris, France, and Belgium.