‘Late into the night we talked of love, of its complications. In my father’s eyes they were imaginary . . . This conception of rapid, violent and passing love affairs appealed to my imagination. I was not at the age when fidelity is attractive. I knew very little about love.’
The French Riviera: home to the Beautiful People. And none are more beautiful than Cécile, a precocious seventeen-year-old, and her father Raymond, a vivacious libertine. Charming, decadent and irresponsible, the golden-skinned duo are dedicated to a life of free love, fast cars and hedonistic pleasures. But then, one long, hot summer Raymond decides to marry, and Cécile and her lover Cyril feel compelled to take a hand in his amours, with tragic consequences.
Bonjour Tristesse scandalized 1950s France with its portrayal of teenager terrible Cécile, a heroine who rejects conventional notions of love, marriage and responsibility to choose her own sexual freedom.
‘The novel that paved the way for the permissive society . . . one of the literary sensations of the century’ Daily Telegraph
About the Author
Francoise Sagan was born in Cajarc, France in 1935. She took her nom de plume from Marcel Proust’s Princesse de Sagan and was eighteen years old when she wrote her bestseller Bonjour Tristesse. Having failed to pass her examinations at the Sorbonne, she decided to write a novel. It received international acclaim and by 1959 had sold 850,000 in France alone. Her other books include A Certain Smile, Those Without Shadows, Aimez-vouz Brahms…, La Chamade, The Heart-Keeper, Sunlight on Cold Water, Scars on the Soul, The Unmade Bed, The Painted Lady, The Still Storm, Painting in Blood, Silken Eyes and Incidental Music. She was also a playwright (her plays include Un Piano dans l’herbe and Zaphorie), wrote three volumes of autobiography – the last volume, Avec mon meilleur souvenir, appeared in 1984. Francoise Sagan died in 2004.