For more than three decades, Lucien — one of the most notorious characters in the history of the novel — has haunted the imaginations of readers around the world. Remarkably, the astounding protagonist of Gabrielle Wittkop’s lyrical 1972 novella, The Necrophiliac, has never appeared in English until now.
This new translation introduces readers to a masterpiece of French literature, striking not only for its astonishing subject matter but for the poetic beauty of the late author’s subtle, intricate writing.
Like the best writings of Edgar Allan Poe or Baudelaire, Wittkop’s prose goes far beyond mere gothic horror to explore the melancholy in the loneliest depths of the human condition, forcing readers to confront their own mortality with an unprecedented intimacy.
Born in 1920 in Nantes, Gabrielle Wittkop is the author of several novels, including La Mort de C., Sérénissime assassinat, and la Marchande d’enfants, as well as numerous poems and short stories. She died in 2002 in Frankfurt where she had lived for several decades. Don Bapst is an award-winning filmmaker and the author of three novels, including The Hanged Man and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Published: May 2011
Dimensions: 5 x 7 in.
“This is a masterpiece.” — The Guardian
“The Necrophiliac is a disturbing little book about ephemeral beauty and impossible love. . . . The beauty of the language coupled with the disturbing subject matter makes for a bizarre, amoral and elliptical journey of a demented individual.” — Telegraph Journal
“The thrills here are anything but cheap, and the pleasure the reader derives is more cerebral than carnal." — MAKE Journal
“You shouldn’t pass up this opportunity to read a loving account of a man who loves the dead as few others can or would.” — The City Book Review
“[S]imultaneously beautiful and grotesque . . . Even now, nearly 40 years after its initial publication, it feels a bit taboo to read it. Here at last, is a boundary that few dare cross, an element of the macabre that has not been played out in a thousand similar iterations already, and it’s been kept secret from me by the barrier of language.” — Rue Morgue