School's Out

School's Out

by Christophe Dufosse
2.5 2


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School's Out 2.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is a disappointing, meandering mess with no plot at all. What a waste of time!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Pierre Hoffman is a secondary school teacher who is taking the job only to pay the bills while he works on his postgraduate thesis, 'trying to show, using phoytographs, that writers always resemble their writings'. I haven't been able to find a clear picture of author Christophe Dufosse, but if he looks anything like his writing, he must be one sexy, philosophical, but slightly disappointing-looking man, based on this English translation by Shaun Whiteside. Originally published in French in 2002 as i L'Heure De La Sortie /i , it won the former schoolteacher the Prix Premier Roman, France's highest honour for a debut novel. The book opens with the apparent suicide of a young teacher, who falls from the window of a classroom as his 13-year-old students wait outside the closed classroom door. Hoffman ends up taking over the class and realises that something's not quite right. The teenagers are obedient and polite but the school administration seems inexplicably afraid of them. With the best of Gallic pessimism, the writer infuses his writing with cynical commentary, musing on reality television as a profound reflection on the human condition, and reading into student questionnaires the evidence of cultural bankruptcy. Descriptions of Hoffman's life - from its empty evenings to a somewhat warped relationship with his sister - set the stage for the revelation of the youngsters' own philosophy, that 'loneliness among adults is the saddest thing in the world'. Quel dommage, that the end of this keenly observed novel does not quite lead up to its promise. Still, it reflects its own point that few things, indeed, tend to live up to expectations.