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by Jean-Philippe Blondel | Translated by Alison Anderson

A French teacher on the verge of retirement is invited to a glittering opening that showcases the artwork of his former student, who has since become a celebrated painter. This unexpected encounter leads to the older man posing for his portrait. Possibly in the nude. Such personal exposure at close range entails a strange and troubling pact between artist and sitter that prompts both to reevaluate their lives. Blondel, author of the hugely popular novel The 6:41 to Paris, evokes an intimacy of dangerous intensity in a tale marked by profound nostalgia and a reckoning with the past that allows its two characters to move ahead into the future.


“Art, love and longing, the French way. Blondel’s book, aided by [Alison] Anderson’s deft translation, is the genuine article: an emotionally taut portrayal of late-in-life, post-marriage drift … Graceful.” — The New York Times Book Review


“Captivating … The novel flies by with gentle humor, but it also poses complex questions about the meaning of art and sexuality, and offers an elegiac look at late middle age … Irresistible, and the story’s fundamental kindness sets it apart.” — Publishers Weekly


“A short philosophical novel about art, time, and memory … A subtle and at times radiant read.” — Kirkus Reviews

Originally published by Buchet-Castel in 2018 with the title La mise à nu.

More information here.

Jean-Philippe Blondel was born in 1964 in Troyes, France where he lives as an author and English teacher. His novel The 6:41 to Paris has been acclaimed in both the United States and Europe.