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‘A beautifully written, dreamlike book . . . A true outlaw artist.’ Bobby Gillespie, The Times
Our Lady of the Flowers, often considered Genet’s masterpiece, was written in the cell of a French prison where he was being held for theft. Here is the darker side of Montmartre, a world of pimps, thieves, prostitutes, queens and blackmailers, where ‘morality’ in the common sense of the word has no meaning. The story of Divine, a drag-queen prostitute, is interwoven with that of one of his lovers, a young man due to be arrested for murder. A story of sex, crime and death, Our Lady of the Flowers is a powerful and original debut novel, which put Genet into the front rank of French writers.
A cry of rapture and horror . . . the purest lyrical genius.
Genet has taken a tabooed subject and created a world that is out of this world. He is a magician, an enchanter of the highest order.
Only a handful of twentieth-century writers, such as Kafka and Proust, have as important, as authoritative, as irrevocable a voice and style.
Elegiac elegance, alternately muted, languorous, vituperative, tender, glamorous, bitchy, lush, mockingly feminine, “high camp”, overripe, vigorous, rigorous, exalted . . . A remarkable, sensitive achievement.
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