When the manuscript of a debut crime novel arrives at a Parisian publishing house, everyone in the readers’ room is convinced it’s something special. And the committee for France’s highest literary honour, the Prix Goncourt, agrees.

But when the shortlist is announced, there’s a problem for editor Violaine Lepage: she has no idea of the author’s identity. As the police begin to investigate a series of murders strangely reminiscent of those recounted in the book, Violaine is not the only one looking for answers. And, suffering memory blanks following an aeroplane accident, she’s beginning to wonder what role she might play in the story …

Antoine Laurain, bestselling author of The Red Notebook, combines intrigue and charm in this dazzling novel of mystery, love and the power of books. 



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This is the story of a debut crime novel that is a massive success, but those who published it have no idea of the author! And when some of the murder scenes from the book happen in real life, the police want to find out more from Violaine who is part of the publishing house that put the book out! What follows is full of twists and turns and revelations that kept me gripped until the end!

It also gives a wonderful glimpse into the life of a publishing house in Paris. The fact that they receive many more misses than hits in their submissions pile, although I do love the idea of being part of the Readers’ Room where Violaine started off her life by reading books ready to locate the next big smash, and worked her way up through the company that way!

Her life is blighted by a plane crash that leaves her in a coma, and then the memory lapses add to her distress, especially as she only seems to be forgetting certain parts of her life.

This was a very clever and intriguing read and I loved the way the story was told – the flashes into the past, the investigation side of the story and the characters evolving.