“Fact-checking is so boring compared to writing fiction.” Francine Prose, bless her for not spending years at the Bibliothèque nationale, and instead giving us her latest novel.

Paris de nuit, photography by Brassaï, published 1933
Paris de nuit, photography by Brassaï, published 1933

On a member of the Resistance helping a nightclub owner escape occupied Paris:

…We talked about the war. About the scenes we’d witnessed and couldn’t get out of our minds… I wish our conversation could have been recorded. I found it intensely interesting: the jabbering of two women high on Nazi amphetamines and the prospect of freedom. But maybe it would have sounded like those tedious postwar novels about beatnik road trips through the American West…

Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 by Francine Prose


This book is a stunner, I can’t recommend it highly enough. Now a little bit from the author on fiction versus non-fiction and in particular, her preparation for this novel — marvelous. From the Paris Review:

Subscribe to Podcast


  1. June 12, 2015

    This reminds me of the moment I decided to stop pursuing my career path toward professional Philosopher. I was working a job as a research assistant photocopying a mindbogglingly huge pile of journal articles in a section of the library where the AC was sub-standard as I stared out a window at a sweet looking couple canoodling under a tree.

    “Nuts to this,” I said to myself. (Well, I think the actual word I used was another four letter one that starts with the letter F, but you get the idea.) That was the last semester I took philosophy.

  2. Heather in Arles
    June 12, 2015

    Oh I love this backstory and I was crazy for the book. It was given to me as a gift when I was stuck in the States last summer (in hard-boud no less!) and I just zoomed through it like…a female car-racer! 😉

  3. June 12, 2015

    Vickie’s recommendation is enough for me!

  4. June 14, 2015

    Ooh – this sounds great! Thanks for recommending.

Comments are closed.