Le dernier des nôtres

400 pages | September 2016 | copies in French | Author photo: ©(c) JF Paga / Grasset

  • Winner of the Grand Prix de l'Académie Française!

An impossible love story.
At a time when everything was possible...

Werner Zilch is an up and coming entrepreneur in New York in the early 1970s. Young and dashing, hungry for recognition and success, Werner was adopted as an infant by a loving middle class couple in New Jersey. He knows nothing of where he came from or his biological family - nor is he particularly interested. But when he meets Rebecca, the daughter of an affluent and established family, and falls madly in love, he risks losing her unless he uncovers the truth of his past.

Layer by layer, he unravels the terrifying and complex story of his origins. Born during the bombing of Dresden in 1945, his mother died the night of his birth. He was brought to America after the war as part of Operation Paperclip -- the mission that allowed the brilliant Nazi scientist Von Braun (the inventor of the V2 missiles) to discreetly relocate to America without any trial or fuss, along with 117 other German nationals.

Why was Werner traveling with Von Braun, and what had his family done during the war? These are some of the questions Werner has to answer if he is going to have a chance of winning back Rebecca.

Just when he feels certain their love is invincible, suddenly he realizes it might be impossible.
"Absolutely magnificent." Tatiana de Rosnay 

"Completely and utterly gripping." Le Figaro 

"This autumn's page-turner.... The sort of novel France rarely delivers... The result is a grenade of a book, perfectly crafted for translations and as sleek as a Maserati." Le Point 

"Adélaïde de Clermont-Tonnerre's new novel is a great read. Well-paced and deeply researched. It tells of a crucial unknown moment: the exfiltration of Nazis towards the US to work on the conquering of space." Jean-Christophe Rufin 

"A riveting novel, impossible to put down, bursting with the same life force as its two heroes." Avantages 

"Adélaïde de Clermont-Tonnerre brilliantly intertwines history's movements." Figaro Magazine 

"Everyone is talking about it. A gripping novel... This romantic book takes hold of the reader until the very end." Elle

Rights sold

10 languages
  • France: Editions Grasset
  • Germany: Aufbau
  • Holland: De Boekerij/Meulenhoff
  • Italy: Sperling & Kupfer
  • Poland: Sonia Draga
  • Portugal: Clube do Autor
  • Romania: Pandora Publishing
  • Serbia: Laguna
  • Spain: Roca
  • UK: Hodder