Wednesday 22 August 2018

The Rest of Their Lives by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent - translated by @RosSchwartz @panmacmillan @CamillaElworthy

Filled with all the larger-than-life characters and enchanting storytelling that made readers fall for The Reader on the 6.27, Jean-Paul Didierlaurent’s follow-up novel, The Rest of Their Lives, is set to charm the world.
It’s difficult to find love in a profession like Ambroise’s – even his father despises what he does . . .
And while Manelle – a home-help for the elderly in the same small French town – adores her days spent with her eccentric clients, she too often ends her evenings alone.
So when an unusual request from Manelle’s favourite client – eighty-two-year-old retired chef-gourmand Samuel – brings the two of them together for an unlikely road-trip to Switzerland, along with Ambroise’s cake-loving grandmother, it might just be time for the rest of their lives to begin . . .

The Rest of Their Lives by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent is translated from the French by Ros Schwartz. The paperback is published by Pan Macmillan on 9 September 2018. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review.

This is a truly delightful story that I practically inhaled in one gulp. Jean-Paul Didierlaurent has a beautiful way with words, and creates some of the most unusual and most loveable characters for his readers.

Ambroise loves his job, however, nobody else does. Even his father despises what he does, but Ambroise will not give up and sets himself the highest of standards. Manelle also loves her job, she also goes that extra half mile to ensure that the elderly people that she cares for feel loved and safe. Both Ambroise and Manelle's private lives suffer due to their dedication to their clients.

When eighty-two year old Samuel makes an unusual demand, Ambroise and Manelle are brought together. Along with Ambroise's grandmother they begin what will become an incredible journey.

Whilst this certainly is 'an unlikely love story' as stated on the cover, the author also deals with some more serious issues that give the reader some food for thought along the way.

Beautifully written, and expertly translated into English, The Rest of Their Lives is gentle and funny and so warm. With characters who are a joy to discover, this is a novel that will delight readers. Really charming. Recommended by me.

Jean-Paul Didierlaurent won a number of short-story competitions and was twice awarded the Hemingway Prize before the resounding success of his first novel, the bestselling 'The Reader on the 6.27', which has been published in over thirty countries.
'The Rest of Their Lives' is his second novel.

Jean-Paul Didierlaurent lives in the Vosges region of France.

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