The Mystery of Henri Pick by David Foenkinos
In the small town of Crozon in Brittany, a library houses manuscripts that were rejected for publication: the faded dreams of aspiring writers. Visiting while on holiday, young editor Delphine Despero is thrilled to discover a novel so powerful that she feels compelled to bring it back to Paris to publish it.
The book is a sensation, prompting fevered interest in the identity of its author – apparently one Henri Pick, a now-deceased pizza chef from Crozon. Sceptics cry that the whole thing is a hoax: how could this man have written such a masterpiece? An obstinate journalist, Jean-Michel Rouche, heads to Brittany to investigate.
By turns funny and moving, The Mystery of Henri Pick is a fast-paced comic mystery enriched by a deep love of books – and of the authors who write them
What the world needs now is a good old fashioned feel-good novel and this is an exciting new collaboration between Pushkin Press and Walter Presents. The Mystery of Henri Pick by David Foenkinos is the first and was also released as a film with English subtitles in 2019.
This charming if quirky novel is set in the French town of Grozon (Brittany) there is a library but this library only stocks books that have been rejected and no-one wants. Imagine you being the writer of a failed book and you have to hand it in to the library in person. Oh the ignominy of that!
The unusual library was set up by Jean-Pierre Gourvec, but when Jean-Pierre died, the library was left and more or less forgotten that it is until the arrival of two people who just happened to be in the area, Delphine is taking her boyfriend Frédéric to meet her parents and just happen find the library and they start to have a look at some of the rejected manuscripts. It is Delphine who suddenly realises that she has found a literary gem but who is the mystery writer Henri Pick? It turns out that Henri has since died but was a local.
After a visit to the late Henri’s wife they decide to get this book published and it becomes a literary sensation. But there has to be a downside to the success and there is one man who is a critic but with not much success jumps on the success to try and stop its success. But what is his reasons?
It is hard to say just how much I loved this beautiful and charming book, I just loved David Foenkinos’s writing style, it has humour and I just loved the real French feel to the storyline. This is a delightful story about books but also about people. Just a real joy to read.
Thank you to Poppy Stimpson (Pushkin Press) for the review copy of The Mystery of Henri Pick by David Foenkinos
The Mystery of Henri Pick by David Foenkinos was published by Pushkin Press and was published on 7th May 2020 and is available to order through Waterstones, Amazon and through your local independent bookshop. Please support your local independent bookshops through these difficult times.