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Delicacy [Kindle Edition]

David Foenkinos
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £7.99
Kindle Price: £4.80 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

He was passing by, she kissed him without thinking. Now she wonders whether she did the right thing. But Natalie isn't certain of anything anymore. One minute she was a happily married young woman, successful in her career, and convinced the future was full of promise. But when her husband was run over by a car, her whole world was turned upside down. Years later, still bruised with grief but desperate to move on with her life, she impulsively kisses her colleague Markus. For Natalie, the kiss is just a gratuitous act. For the awkward, unassuming Markus, it is the moment at which he falls hopelessly, helplessly in love. But how will he ever convince such a beautiful, intelligent but confused young woman that he is the man who can bring her back to life?

Product Description


Reads like an Amelie for grown-ups ... This tragic-comic smasher from the fantastic French author David Foenkinos has made a huge impact in his home country ... Written with [an] irresistible charm, this novel's delicacy and lightness is given weight by the undercurrent of grief and broken hearts (Stylist Book of the Week 2011-12-14)

A more whimsical, less knowing variation on David Nicholls' blockbuster One Day ... unputdownable ... Immensely likeable, unexpectedly compelling and moving (Eileen Battersby Irish Times 2011-12-10)

Lists and notes, in Nick Hornby or Alain de Botton style, punctuate the narrative. "Delicate" is probably the mot juste for this ineffably Gallic romance, which is translated with panache (Independent)

An exquisite novel of hidden beauty (Elle)

A skilfully depicted, lovely romantic comedy whose real charm is to celebrate the new surprises of love (Journal du Dimanche)

A marvel (Anna Gavalda)

Book Description

Now a major motion picture, starring Audrey Tautou

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1848 KB
  • Print Length: 257 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1408832526
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Paperbacks; 1 edition (6 Dec. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006XA81MK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #134,903 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Something of a curates soufflé... 24 Aug. 2012
I started this book in much the same way as the main character - hopeful. It seemed so full of promise. Unfortunately, I very quickly found myself becoming irritated by the writing style, which reads like a cross between a movie script and a Twitter feed. Is it really necessary for a 250 page book to have 115 chapters? - Especially when some of them are made up of only three or four words. I should have been forewarned by the footnote on the first page, where after saying "But she never ever felt nostalgia. That was something that was quite rare for Natalie" the author feels compelled to add a footnote saying "There's often a clear tendency for nostalgia in Natalies".

Even though the story is quite slight, there are plus points. The two main characters are quite well drawn, and the writing style is such that not only do you get to see their back story and motivation, but you get to see their thinking. Unfortunately, there are other characters who, for me, actively detracted from the book. Natalie's boss, Charles, in particular is supposed to be holding down a responsible position but acts in such a way that in real life, he would be in industrial tribunals and police investigations so fast his head would have been spinning. Considering the book is set within the last decade, he seems to have been drawn from the 1950's.

If you can put up with the staccato style, and are looking for something light and frothy to read on a weekend break, then this may be very much for you but if you are looking for a literary romance then, alas, you may be in for a disappointment - much in the style of a collapsed soufflé.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A triumph of style over substance 5 April 2012
By Julia Flyte TOP 100 REVIEWER
Delicacy is a quirky and very French love story. It's a slim book with an even slimmer plot. It's about a woman called Natalie who marries the love of her life and then loses him in an accident. She retreats into social isolation, throwing herself into her work. Her boss Charles is attracted to her, but she rebuffs his advances and then starts a tentative relationship with one of her staff members, a Swede named Markus. And that's pretty much it.

It took me a while to adjust to the writing style. The story is relayed in a very impersonal way, almost like a documentary. There are little footnotes and pauses in the story to tell us the ingredients for the dish the characters are eating at that moment or technical details about something that has been alluded to in passing. It's unusual and could have seemed pretentious, but instead it comes across as charming. At one point we are even told in a footnote who the author imagines would be playing two of the characters if this was a movie - and indeed, they are the same two actresses who have taken on those roles in the real life film of the book.

Initially I felt that the translation was somewhat clunky , but either it settled down or I got used to the writing style. And then about halfway through I realised that I was loving it. The tone is very droll - the closest way I can think to describe it is that it reads the way that films like Amelie [DVD] [2001] and Delicatessen [DVD] felt. It's like eating a macaroon: a delicate flavour, delicious sensation on your tongue, and then crunch! it's gone.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OUTSTANDING 18 April 2012
I haven't read a literary novel in years- literally. I almost always read non-fiction titles but felt compelled to purchase this novel after seeing the film (which I loved). I love the author's style, humour, and sense of fun. This is a sweet, feel-good delight! It is really touching, moving, and gives you the hope to love again.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Like an 'Amelie' for Grown-Ups?... Absolutely! 23 April 2012
Natalie and Francois meet by chance on the street; Francois says something complimentary to Natalie, they go for a drink and Francois thinks to himself that this is the girl he will marry. And they do get married; life is good and both Francois and Natalie are happy and fulfilled - that is until Francois gets knocked over while out jogging and dies a few days later, leaving Natalie stunned and totally bereft. (Please note -I am not trying to spoil the story, the reader learns that Francois dies very early on in the book).

When Natalie returns to her office three months later, her boss, Charles, lets her know that he finds her very attractive, but Natalie clearly explains to him that she is not interested in anyone else, and she really isn't - until one day some time later, on impulse, she passionately kisses a colleague, Markus, and then carries on as if nothing has happened. For Natalie cannot explain the kiss, there is nothing to say: "The kiss was like modern art". But for Markus, a tall, diffident Swedish young man with an endearing off-beat sense of humour, her kiss means everything and he sets out to win Natalie's heart.

This is a rather extraordinary novel and one which I thoroughly enjoyed - it says on the front copy of my edition that this book is like an 'Amelie' (Amelie [DVD] [2001]) for grown-ups and I would totally agree with that description.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars The risks of happiness
Beautiful Nathalie, whose kneecaps alone make men swoon, has an idyllic marriage to handsome high-flier François, a burgeoning career in her own right, and the sense of proportion... Read more
Published 6 days ago by Antenna
3.0 out of 5 stars Delicatesse.
It is a very Parisian book,mixing what French call " spleen" and used a lot in their novel,and some humor . Read more
Published 11 months ago by canova
5.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyed this book.
A friend recommended this book as he knows I hate reading and have not read a book in 30 years because he felt I would enjoy the shorter chapters and the story. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Moo Moos
5.0 out of 5 stars Like Amelie
This book reminded me of the film Amelie - quirky and different.
It has substance and soul. Give it a go.
Published 17 months ago by Mike 999
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful love story
I saw the film first and the book was just as good. Audrey Tatou was most definitely perfect for the role of Natalie.
It really is a true gem.
Published 18 months ago by Melina Carey
5.0 out of 5 stars a good companion if youve only watched the film
i saw the film first, and the book second, and to me this has made me thoroughly enjoy the book as i loved the film, and the extra depth in the book shows just how well the actors... Read more
Published 21 months ago by j r hewitt
4.0 out of 5 stars Imaginative Read
Delicacy is essentially a love story, but written in an original way.

Natalie is in a delicate situation, as the title suggests, after the sudden death of her husband. Read more
Published on 3 Oct. 2012 by batster007
4.0 out of 5 stars wow
Delicacy, is an easy read book with short chapters, the longest one is 3 or 4 pages. There are lots of little one page chapters. My favorite was.... Read more
Published on 27 Aug. 2012 by sara charman
3.0 out of 5 stars Charming and unexpectedly moving
Author David Foenkinos has managed to create, in Delicacy, a novel that is both charming and sweet without being mushy or overly sentimental. Read more
Published on 12 Aug. 2012 by Lizzi
2.0 out of 5 stars Novel for the twitter generation
A very quirky book, written for the twitter generation with lots of short chapters and short sentences. The style never lets you really settle down with it. Read more
Published on 11 Aug. 2012 by Thengland66
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