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Book spotlight: The Elegance of the Hedgehog

French contemporary writer French literature Muriel Barbery Paris novel

This delightful novel narrates the experiences and inner journey of two characters who dwell at the fringes of polite society in contemporary Paris: a sharp, if somewhat reclusive, concierge and a precocious twelve year old girl who is disgusted with her family, her community and the vanity of their existence.  The narrative takes the form of journal entries and inner reflections from these two brilliantly witty characters, whose keen observations afford a window into the lives of Parisians.  Told with wit and wisdom that rivals the sages of ancient Greece and the philosophes of the Age of Enlightenment, this story will renew the reader’s appreciation of the oft-ignored richness and beauty of everyday life.

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