Elle by Philippe Djian: A Review

Michele was traumatized after her father kills a large group of children at a camp.  While her father sits in prison, Michele and her mother suffer physical and verbal assaults, but now Michele's mother, Irene, wants her to visit her father.  In the meantime, Michele and her ex-husband, Richard, disagree with how to handle their young adult son, Vincent, when Vincent decides to enter a relationship with a pregnant woman and put his name on the birth certificate, despite having debts and having just started a low-level job at McDonald's.  Irene thinks herself a spring chicken and satisfies her desires with younger men but collapses at a party and falls into a coma.  Needless to say, Michele doesn't need the additional stress and anguish she experiences after being sexually assaulted.  Now, she knows she is being watched, her home broken into and her things rifled with.  Any man could be the man who raped her.

This book was billed as a psychological thriller but there is so much family drama that it reads more like a work of women's fiction for most of the book.  Michele's reaction to her assault was both shocking and disturbing.  Many may call what she did liberating but I felt deeply uncomfortable with it.  This book was translated very well and reads very quickly but I can't say that I enjoyed the story.  I think this book would be very triggering for a lot of people and one that will make many people angry.  While the story about Michele's family was interesting, the story of her reaction to her assault was too disturbing for me to enjoy this book. 

This book was adapted into a movie.  Watch the trailer here:


Reviews of books like this one:
I See You by Clare Mackintosh
Who You Think I Am by Camille Laurens
The Fall of Lisa Bellow by Lisa Perabo

This book is available on March 14th and can be purchased from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  Read more reviews on this book on Goodreads.

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher in order to review it but that did not have an effect on my review of the book.  This is my honest opinion of this book.  I am a participant in the Amazon Affiliates program.  By clicking on the Amazon link and purchasing this product, I receive a small fee.  I am not associated with Goodreads or Barnes and Noble in any way and the links provided are available strictly for your convenience and not to imply a relationship of any kind.

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