French Exit ~ by Patrick deWitt

I got this one because I enjoyed The Sisters Brothers which I read several years ago. French Exit is definitely different although it’s somewhat wacky and kind of “absurd,” as the New Yorker said. They also said it’s billed as a “tragedy of manners” which I totally see. Making a “French Exit” is like leaving a party without saying goodbye.

French Exit
by Patrick deWitt
2018 / 253 pages
read by Lorna Raver – 6h 53m
rating: 8 / contemp lit

Francis Price is the suddenly destitute 65-year old widowed mother of Malcolm Price, a boarding school drop-out. They take what cash they can get their hands on (a couple hundred thousand dollars) and escape to Europe, followed by their small cat who is apparently the container of Mr Price’s spirit. Much of this is told in backstory bits as the story starts out with Francis and Malcolm preparing to leave the US.

It’s an odd little book, but that’s only fully realized toward the end. I enjoyed it as it’s kind of light and quirky, after all this is the same guy who gave us The Sisters Brothers. It’s very nicely written and well narrated.

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