'Platform' is an existentialist love story. I must admit that I did find the novel good company. The narrator, Michel, a civil servant, takes an outsider's interest in business practices and customer psychology - areas which sound very dry, but which, in the author's hands, make for some interesting conversations. In between times, Houellebecq spices things up with sex - some of it quite erotic (as is intended) and some of it quite gratuitous.
There is a fair amount of literary criticism along the way, with digressions into the works of Agatha Christie, Conan Doyle and even John Grisham (for whom the narrator clearly has little time). There are also mentions for Enid Blyton's 'Famous Five' and Stevenson's 'Treasure Island'.
The only aspect of the novel which disappointed me was the ending. I did not like the fact that Michel totally gives up on life. I wanted to give him a shake - to tell him that stuff happens, and that you have to get over it. But, in mitigation, this is a character who has received a very severe shock, and who was, perhaps, more in love than he realised. And one whose grip on life was, at best, only half-hearted. But it still means that the novel ends on a bit of a downer.
'Platform' could also have done with more humour - although Michel is perhaps not the most naturally ebullient, or wittiest, of characters. But then, it would also be fair to say that humour is not a noted ingredient of French existentialist novels.
Neverthless, I stayed with 'Platform' quite happily to the end....and, overall, I did enjoy it.