The First Thing You See

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What to expect

Imagine you are a young mechanic living in a small community in France. You own your own home, and lead a simple life. Then one evening, you open your front door to find a distraught Hollywood starlet standing in front of. This is what happens to Arthur Drefuss in the village of Long, population 687 inhabitants.

But although feigning an American accent, this woman is not all that she seems. For her name is Jeanine Foucamprez, and her story is very different from the glamorous life of a star. Arthur is not all he seems, either; a lover of poetry with a darker past than one might imagine, he has learnt to see beauty in the mundane.

THE FIRST THING YOU SEE is a warm, witty novel about two fragile souls learning to look beyond the surface – for the first thing you see isn’t always what you get!
Read by David Thorpe

(p) 2015 Orion Publishing Group

Critics Review

  • It’s a powerful message which begins with the novel’s title – a meditation on our obsession with beauty, celebrity and the consequences for those lumbered with one or both, delivered in a deceptively simple package stuffed full of filmic references and peppered with poetic quotations. It’s a little gem and it’s been a long time in the offing in translation.

    A Life In Books
  • This smart romantic comedy is charmingly Gallic and cries out to be filmed as a sentimental comedy.

  • At once tender and harrowing, light-hearted and profound, it is a highly original and affecting read.


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