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Suite Francaise
Suite Francaise
Author: Sandra Smith (Translator), Irene Nemirovsky
By the early l940s, when Ukrainian-born Irene Nemirovsky began working on what would become Suite Francaise--the first two parts of a planned five-part novel--she was already a highly successful writer living in Paris. But she was also a Jew, and in 1942 she was arrested and deported to Auschwitz: a month later she was dead at the age of thirty-...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9781400096275
ISBN-10: 1400096278
Publication Date: 4/10/2007
Pages: 448
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 409 ratings
Publisher: Vintage
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Suite Francaise on
Helpful Score: 19
After all the media hype over the discovery of this manuscript following the author's tragic death, I was really looking forward to reading this book. Alas, this was one of the most boring and difficult books I've attempted to read in the past few years.

I don't know if something was lost in translation, but the prose was flat, dull and the characters were not likeable. I tried, giving it the 100 page rule, but in the end I put it back in the bag and took it back to the bookstore to exchange.

I think the backstory of the author's experience, her deportation to Auschwitz and subsequent death, and then the 'discovery' of this manuscript would have made for a more interesting novel. Perhaps others will enjoy this, but it didn't live up to the hype for me.
reviewed Suite Francaise on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 18
I had high expectations for this book. Several times in the beginning I almost quit reading it. I found the book to be hard to follow and not very captivating. However, the last 100 - 150 pages did get better. At the end of the book I did find myself satisfied and glad I had read it. All in all it was a good glimpse of a very difficult time in history.
reviewed Suite Francaise on + 38 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 13
This was a very powerful read for me. Nemirovsky's prose is so beautiful and full; she wrote with such detail that I could picture the characters in my mind just perfectly. The little twist at the end really caught me off guard and made the awful situation all the more real. I loved this book and it will be on my mind long after I've shipped it away to another reader.
reviewed Suite Francaise on
Helpful Score: 9
I though it was an extraordinary and sensitive book written in the middle of the horrors of world word 2. Remarkable awareness of the human condition by a relatively young woman. Obviously a highly intelligent and well educated woman.

Though not a finished novel, to me it felt complete and highly satisfying. It amazes me that other reviewers have said they could "not get into it". I could not put it down and ready it in two sittings.

Great fiction, great writer.
reviewed Suite Francaise on + 33 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 9
It is a work of fiction, but sometimes reads like non-fiction. I found myself absorbed in it. Yes, it is an incomplete work. It is tragic that the author was killed before it could be completed. I found it to be a fascinating glimpse into the personal horrors and human reactions to war. The appendices tell the rest of the story, and that story is true and more tragic than anything the author could have penned.

If you are looking for a classic start-to-finish novel, this is probably not going to be a satisfying read. If you are a WWII history buff, this story about the German conquest/occupation of France will not disappoint you. I personally loved it and finished it in only two days. I could not put it down.
Read All 40 Book Reviews of "Suite Francaise"