ABOUT VENGEANCE IS MINE
From the best-selling author of Three Strong Women comes a thrilling novel about a triple homicide that dredges up unsettling memories from a lawyer’s childhood.
The heroine of Marie NDiaye’s new novel is a quiet middle-aged lawyer, living a modest existence in Bordeaux. She has been so effectively consumed by her job she is known to all simply as Maître Susane. But when Gilles Principaux shows up at her office asking her to defend his wife, who is accused of a horrific crime, Maître Susane begins to crack. She seems to remember having been alone with him in her youth for a significant event, one her mind obsesses over but can’t quite reconstruct. Who is this Gilles Principaux? And why would he come to her, a run-of-the-mill lawyer, for such an important trial?
While this mystery preoccupies Maître Susane, at home she is greeted by Sharon, her faithful but peculiar housekeeper. Sharon arrived from Mauritius with her husband and children, and she lacks legal residency in France. And while Maître Susane has generously offered Sharon her professional services, the young maid always finds ways to evade her, claiming the marriage certificate Maître Susane requires is being held hostage. Is Sharon being honest with Maître Susane, or is something more sinister going on?
Told in a slow seethe recalling the short novels of Elena Ferrante and the psychological richness of Patricia Highsmith’s work, Vengeance Is Mine is a dreamlike portrait of a woman afflicted by failing memories, tortured uncertainty, and an unreliability that frightens her.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
MARIE NDIAYE was born in Pithiviers, France. She is the author of Rosie Carpe, winner of the Prix Femina, and of Three Strong Women, winner of the Prix Goncourt. She is also the recipient of the Gold Medal in the Arts from the Kennedy Center International Committee on the Arts. She lives in Paris.