The Paris Lawyer

The Paris Lawyer

by Sylvie Granotier, Anne Trager

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780985320614
Publisher: Le French Book
Publication date: 05/01/2014
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 575,281
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Considered in France a master of crime fiction, author, screenwriter and actress Sylvie Granotier loves to weave plots that send shivers up your spine. She was born in Algeria and grew up in Paris and Morocco. She studied literature and theater in Paris, then set off traveling across the United States, Brazil, Afghanistan, and elsewhere, ending with a tour of Europe.  She wound up in Paris again, an actress, with a job and some recognition. But she is a writer at heart, and started her publishing career translating Grace Paley's short story collection Enormous Changes at the Last Minute into French. Fourteen novels and many short stories later, Sylvie Granotier is a major French author. She has met with continued success, and is translated into German, Italian, Russian and Greek. The Paris Lawyer is her first novel to be translated into English. Sylvie splits her time between Paris and the Creuse.
Author, screenwriter and actress Sylvie Granotier loves to weave plots that send shivers up your spine. She was born in Algeria and grew up in Paris and Morocco. She studied literature and theater in Paris, then set off traveling —the United States, Brazil, Afghanistan, and elsewhere, ending with a tour of Europe. She wound up in Paris again, an actress, with a job and some recognition. But she is a writer at heart, and started her publishing career translating Grace Paley’s short story collection Enormous Changes at the Last Minute into French. Fourteen novels and many short stories later, Sylvie Granotier is a major crime fiction author in France. She has met with continued success, and is translated into German, Italian, Russian and Greek. The Paris Lawyer is her first novel to be translated into English. This legal procedural that doubles as a psychological thriller is full of plot twists that bring us into the heart of French countryside, La Creuse, a place full of nineteenth-century landscapes and dark secrets. Sylvie splits her time between Paris and the Creuse.
Anne Trager loves France so much she has lived there for over a half a century and just can’t seem to leave. What keeps her there is a uniquely French mix of pleasure seeking and creativity. Well, that and the wine. In 2011, she woke up one morning and said, “I just can’t stand it anymore. There are way too many good books being written in France not reaching a broader audience.” That’s when she founded Le French Book to translate some of those books into English. The company’s motto is “If we love it, we translate it,” and Anne loves crime fiction, mysteries and detective novels.

Read an Excerpt

One early afternoon, in all other ways like any other afternoon, her mother takes her out in her stroller, soothing her with a lilting mother’s voice. She tells her about the wind that sings and then softens in the branches and the swallows that skillfully skim the pond for a few refreshing drops of water before flying into the clouds in perfect circles. The little girl does not understand every word, but she follows her mother’s fingers as they imitate playful birds gliding down to her face. Then her mother and she will go home for snack followed by a nap. It is a reassuring life, where nothing unexpected happens. They stop at the edge of the woods, in the shade of the trees. The little girl toys with the light, squinting to change the intensity of the rays. Before the screaming starts, before her mother’s distant terror horrifies her in turn, before the panicked shrill pierces her ears, and the little girl takes refuge in sleep to bury an anxiety far too great for her to bear, her mother gives her a generous and warm hug, leaving her with the sight of the entire sky, and says, “I’ll be right back.” A final broken promise. Sitting as she is, the child cannot see the body, or what is left of it, sprawled on the ground, beaten to a pulp. Yet that moment of abandonment remains forever engraved in her adult memory.

Interviews

"In my book The Paris Lawyer, I deliberately chose a very modern type of Parisian woman, independent, strong, dealing with men on her own terms. She is sexy, stylish, uninhibited, despite her being haunted by her past. I think she is very different from the kick-ass school of American female investigators, which I do also enjoy very much! But I think there’s got to be room for both Vic Warshawski and for Catherine Monsigny in crime novels. And we the readers are all the richer for it."

Customer Reviews

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The Paris Lawyer 3.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
gelle More than 1 year ago
A young Parisian lawyer offers to take a pro Bono murder case involving an African immigrant. To build the case for her client, she had to travel to the locale where the defendant committed the crime. What she unearthed was not the story of her client, but the discovery of herself. Everything she had believed was exhumed and evaluated before the case was completed. The book excels in depicting the subtle details of everyday life that we often ignore. It poignantly depicts the feelings and emotions of the character in such a way that the reader readily identifies with the scene. The translated version conveys the intent of the writer. It is a mirror of an excellent story.
jakejm More than 1 year ago
The main character is torn betwwen two places (Paris and Creuse) and two times (present and past when her mother was killed). It gives a real depth to the story and this complex character. I loved it!
reececo331 More than 1 year ago
A look into the politics of law and lawyers. this is a dark story about the slippery slope of love and law. The book looks into the ups and downs of law in Parisian courts. Catherine Monsigny is a survivor that has learned to out live the most horrific problems of childhood. she uses her knowledge of criminals and victims to help her solve the mysteries of her cases, and how she can piece together the events that have colored her past. 
druidgirl More than 1 year ago
A young attorney from Paris, Cathrine Monsigny is hired by Myriam Villetreix who is accused of killing her elderly white husband and who married her to stop her from being deported. The village this happened in was the same one that that Catherine's mother was murdered in when she was a young child, this has haunted Catherine all her life as she was there when the murder occurred. Catherine soon discovers that she may also be able to solve her mother's murder as well as saving her client. I enjoyed the author immensely and hope there will be more books translated written by her. ***I received this book from the publisher for an honest review****
MonicaFMF More than 1 year ago
Catherine is a young lawyer who has just taken on her first murder case. Unfortunately, I couldn't get far with this one. Perhaps it was due to the translation, but the narrative and characters were not very engaging. Then every other page was blank (possibly as I was reading an Advanced Reader's Copy), so I felt lost. Overall, a disappointing start.
Margitte More than 1 year ago
Not only a murder mystery, it's also elegant magic! Paris( France) Dr. Claude Monsigny regarded himself as the model father for his model little daughter, Catherine Monsigny. Catherine did not know her mother, Violet, who was brutally murdered as a young women. The gruesome event took place when Violet took her little baby daughter, Catherine, in stroller for a walk, never to return. He would combine the roles of both parents in raising her and protecting her against anything sinister that might possibly bring more harm to her. He made sure that a personal holocaust of Violet's memory would be executed in ensuring that his baby girl would never again be reminded of that day. Catherine was not allowed to ever talk about her again. She did not even know where her mother was buried. She did not even know about "Devil’s Wash, the place where Violet loved the rocks, the multiple waterfalls, the dark mystery and the crystalline cheerfulness." As a young adult, twenty-five-year old Catherine Monsigny was on the brink of her first big murder case in the Creuse, France as a lawyer. Gaston Villetreix died and his African wife, Myriam (N’Bissi), was accused of murdering him. The case could mean a first big break for Catharine and she was willing to leave Paris and represent the accused in her home village in The Creuse region of France. However, before leaving Paris, she was defending Cedric Devers in an assault and battery case, in Paris, and she started to get flashbacks about her mother and the day of her murder. It would become more frequent when she arrived in the village, which startled and upset her since her memories were dormant for most of her life.  She was just a baby, way too young, to remember what really happened that day.  Her father never remarried. He never could replace the love he had for his wife. She was the girl he was waiting for his entire life. He instinctively knew that she is the change he has been waiting for, his future raison d’être. He will be the answer to her life’s detour.  The following months would become a trial in more ways than one when she had to deal with two murder cases, her own love interests, as well as address betrayal, deception, secrets, suspicion and strange events. "Catherine remains calm. In any case, she has been reared never to raise her voice. Keep control. Stay calm. Emotional responses should be controlled, lest they overflow, heaving up debris like a tidal wave." But most of all she had to learn the real meaning of love. Was it a hide-all for everything that can go wrong? Or was there really something like unconditional love. She also, for the first time in her life, had to address the suppressed emotions and memories behind her mother's death which kept her jailed behind high emotional walls. "Brutal, unexpected death, when it cuts off one life, interrupts others, which are cleanly amputated, left without any follow-up, no conclusion , eternally connected to nothing." Myriam "suggested that love is a luxury enjoyed by those who do not have survival issues".  But despite everything she had to face "she(Catharine) wanted to believe that love had other faces and that when her turn arrived, she would be loved better." "You build your house brick by brick, and even before putting on the roof, a catastrophe transforms it into a pile of stones, without you ever knowing who destroyed your universe one day or why." While reading this murder mystery, and psychological thriller, par excellence the thought came up that this story was the work of a professional, without knowing anything about the author. All strings were nicely tied and secured. The ending was unique. In fact, it was one of the most refreshing and original I have read in a very long time.  Thriller, suspense, emotional drainer, fast-moving, nail-biting. And finally you will understand what love really means.  Five stars for keeping me glued and awake and beyond thrilled! You will walk away happy, that's guaranteed! Not only because of how the story played out, how the elements were securely blended together, but also because it was so brilliantly written. Any adult, both genders, can read it. I will undoubtedly read this author again.
gaele More than 1 year ago
This was an incredibly compelling story that maintains that peculiar sensibility that is utterly French yet eludes description.  While most of the more procedurally focused stories I have read flow between police and criminal, Granotier mixes it up and gives us young lawyer Catherine Monsigny enmeshed in two different storylines of past and present.    Lush descriptions place readers in the city of Paris or in the small village in the hills of central France. It is easy to relate to the small town feel: curious neighbors, unlocked doors and a bit of suspicion about anyone different, Parisian or immigrant.  Catherine is brought forward to defend Miriam Villetrieux for the poisoning death of her husband Gaston.  As an African immigrant, orphaned at a young age and brought to Paris for a position with rather dubious employers, her life has been a difficult one until she married the well-off and older Gaston.  Where I expected to see far more covert and even overt racism displayed toward Miriam, I was surprised to see evidence of Catherine’s difficulty in overcoming her own racial bias and tendency to jump to conclusions.  Catherine often seemed more immature than her position and education would warrant, her rush to conclusion without fully investigating people or situations was troubling, especially as she seems to lack that essential quality of ‘people sense’, and is a horrible judge of character.   I think there are two huge issues for her: the strained relationship with her father over his refusal to discuss her mother or her mother’s death, and her education and lawyer speaks tend to become her separation and protection from situations that are emotionally difficult. I saw her as lacking in self-confidence which she covers over with a more stilted and often overly complex speech that bleeds into her personal narrative because it is safe and comfortable.  I felt for her, even if I didn’t particularly empathize with her.  Other characters were as well-crafted and complex, with varying degrees of success and import to the plot.  While the book did require very careful reading as the present and past often collide with little notice.  But, as the more menacing undertones start to reveal themselves the pacing changes and the distinction between past and present is more apparent and easier to follow. Bringing all of the threads to one final conclusion, Granotier has pulled layers from the characters to expose their secrets and flaws up to the last pages, and created a story that was well worth the time to read.  I received an eBook copy from the publisher for purpose of honest review for France Book Tours.  I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Difficult to read. Some chapters are good, but some have paragraphs inserted that seem to come from nowhere and don't identify the characters. Must have lost something in the translation.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I did not like reading it in the first person.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Unusual with many twists and turns.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Did not enjoy, didn't finish reading. Would not recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed it, however, I think in its translation it lost some of the story. It was very good, worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MexicoDan More than 1 year ago
This is not a terrible book, but there are many, many more interesting "international" mysteries out there for the reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Would give 0 rating