Books by Donald Nicholson-Smith

SERAPHIN by Philippe Fix
by Philippe Fix, illustrated by Philippe Fix, translated by Donald Nicholson-Smith
Released: July 9, 2019

"A gorgeous but elusive import. (Picture book. 8-12)"
Dreamer Seraphin finds difficulty working and living in modern-day Paris. Read full book review >
Released: Jan. 22, 2019

"A complex portrait of the nature and power of narrative."
An author and illustrator meditates on the need to remember the past in order to understand the present. Read full book review >
IVORY PEARL by Jean-Patrick Manchette
Released: May 15, 2018

"Idiosyncratic French novelist Manchette, whose 1995 death at age 52 prevented him from completing this existentialist thriller, went out in style. Short but sprawling, the novel packs a mean punch."
In his final, unfinished novel, available for the first time in English, Manchette departs from crime fiction—but not extreme violence—to deliver a saga of high adventure. Read full book review >
PARIS VAGABOND by Jean-Paul Clébert
Released: April 12, 2016

"Altogether, they add to the impression that this is less a novel than a book of reportage. But no matter how it's classified, it's a sobering, eyes-wide-open view of the Paris no guidebook would care to portray."
"This is not supposed to be a Baedeker or some tourist guide": Clébert offers a hellish itinerary of the less fortunate quarters of Paris. Read full book review >
THE MAD AND THE BAD by Jean-Patrick Manchette
Released: July 15, 2014

"A minor masterpiece from a French novelist whose other recently reissued works include Fatale and The Prone Gunman."
A young beauty sprung from an insane asylum, a hired killer with a bad case of workplace anxiety, a calculating philanthropist and his orphaned nephew create nonstop havoc in this 1972 French novel, translated into English for the first time. Read full book review >
THREE TO KILL by Jean-Patrick Manchette
Released: March 1, 2002

"A social satire cum suspense equally interested in dissecting everyday banalities and manufacturing thrills. Writing with economy, deadpan irony, and an eye for the devastating detail, Manchette spins pulp fiction into literature. "
A first appearance in English for the late Manchette (1942-95). Near the end of this sleek noir thriller, Georges Gerfaut sums up the plot thus far for an enigmatic beauty named Alphonsine, who may or may not help him: "Until last summer I was a middle manager in a company in Paris. I went on vacation and two men tried to kill me, twice, for reasons unknown to me. Two complete strangers. At which point I left my wife and children and, instead of informing the police, fled." (The unanswered "Why?" pulses provocatively under the surface.)? Gerfaut goes on to recount several harrowing close calls over the previous months. He begins as an homme in a gray flannel suit, leading a comfortable but unexciting bourgeois life. The accoutrements of his Mercedes—steel-gray with brown interior—are described with clinical precision. Late one night, he plays Good Samaritan, picking up an injured man on the side of the highway and taking him to a hospital. The man, Mouzon, is bleeding heavily and can barely speak. Three days later comes the first of several attempts on Gerfaut's life, ordered by creepy-elegant crime kingpin Alonso Emerich y Emerich, who loves only his bull mastiff Elizabeth, but her excessively, and carried out by the volatile hitmen Carlo and Bastien. They finish off Mouzon before devoting themselves completely to the pursuit of Gerfaut. Read full book review >