Author(s): Delphine de Vigan
Only a teenager when Delphine was born, Lucile raised two daughters largely alone. She was a former child model from a Bohemian family, younger and more glamorous than the other mothers: always in lipstick, wayward and wonderful. But as Delphine grew up, Lucile's occasional sadness gave way to overwhelming despair and delusion. She became convinced she was telepathic, in control of the Paris metro system; she gave away all her money; she was hospitalized, medicated, and released in a kind of trance. Young Delphine was left to wonder: What changed her, or what shaped her all along? In this brilliant investigation into her own family history, Delphine de Vigan attempts to "write her mother," seeking out something essential as she interviews aging relatives, listens to recordings, and reads Lucile's own writings. It is a history of luminous beauty and rambunctious joy, of dark secrets and silences. There are untimely deaths and failures of memory. There are revelations and there is the ultimately unknowable. And in the face of the unknowable, personal history becomes fiction: De Vigan must choose from differing accounts and fill in important gaps, using her writer's imagination to reconstruct a life. De Vigan writes her most expansive novel yet with acute self-awareness and marvelous sympathy. Nothing Holds Back the Night is a remarkable work, universally recognizable and singularly heartbreaking.
From the author of Underground Time, Delphine de Vigan, a novel based on her investigation into the life of her mercurial mother, in the wake of her suicide
Absolutely stunning. This remarkable book is not a memoir, a biography, an analysis or a novel: it is all these and more. It is about the struggle to weave sense out of mutinous threads, how silence breeds crisis, how we are made and unmade. "Gauging the extent of the mystery" that was her mother, de Vigan strips the psychodrama of family ties - the basis of every human life - to the bone Janice Galloway Delphine de Vigan is a sensation Observer One of those books that grabs you and demands to be read Clare Morrall, author of The Man Who Disappeared (on Underground Time) Sympathetic, compelling, enjoyable Guardian (on Underground Time) This novel is a thing of poetic beauty ... more complicated than it looks at first The Times (on No and Me) One of those special stories that everyone should read - and then think about, often and deeply' Eileen Battersby, Irish Times (on No and Me)
Delphine de Vigan is the author of No and Me, which was a bestseller in France (400,000 copies) and was awarded the Prix des Libraires (The Booksellers' Prize) in 2008 and in Britain was a Richard and Judy selection where it has sold more than 70,000 copies. Her other novels include Les Jolis Garcons and Soir de decembre. Underground Time was shortlisted for the Goncourt Prize in 2009. Her books have been translated into twenty-five languages. She lives in Paris. George Miller is the translator of No and Me and Underground Time. He is also a regular translator for Le Monde diplomatique's English-language edition, and the translator of Conversations with my Gardener by Henri Cueco, Inside Al-Qaeda by Mohammed Sifaoui and Disordered World by Amin Maalouf.