Fugitive parce que reine

Violaine Huisman

250 pages January 2018 French copies available Original publisher: GallimardLiterary Fiction

Winner of the Prix Marie-Claire and the Prix Françoise Sagan

“I’d hesitate to describe my lovers as men. Not out of ambivalence about my sexual orientation (decidedly straight: I like coercive sex, abrasive cheeks, pungent smells, the way they size you up and take up too much space inside, hands over yours), but rather because men belonged to her. Men were my mother’s domain. Even if some of her conquests were closer to my age than hers, and vice-versa, I never graduated from boys.”

A portrait of a beautiful, passionate, and mercurial Parisian woman.

Huisman’s striking and assured prose reveals the layers of a singular heroine – mother, lover, frontline feminist – in a literary novel that is by turns shrewd, heartbreaking, and bitingly funny.



“Violaine Huisman unfurls memories, facts and family myths…it’s poignant, terribly alive…the grit Huisman has in retelling her story, both as a young girl and as a writer, is as beautiful as it is brave…dignified and devastating, the book is a superb monument to a woman who spent her whole life in flight.” — Le Monde

“The most stunning book of this spring.” — France 2

“A sparkling debut. Any sadness in the telling is countered by the panache and surprise of the writing infused in these pages. Love wins out in a life of struggle–the struggle of a monarch without a kingdom.” — Elle

“A poignant autobiographical first novel…a strikingly beautiful work.”— RTL

“A magnificent ode. Her prose abounds with literary force.” — Le Point

“A coup de coeur…A magnificent portrait.” — France Inter

“Hypnotic and searching.” — La Vie

“An intelligent, rich debut.” — Liberation

“An emphatically gripping debut.” — Livres Hebdo