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The Inseparables


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About the Author

Simone de Beauvoir (Author) Simone de Beauvoir was born in Paris in 1908. In 1929 she became the youngest person ever to obtain the agregation in philosophy at the Sorbonne, placing second to Jean-Paul Sartre. She taught at the lycees at Marseille and Rouen from 1931-1937, and in Paris from 1938-1943. After the war, she emerged as one of the leaders of the existentialist movement, working with Sartre on Les Temps Mordernes. The author of several books including The Mandarins (1957) which was awarded the Prix Goncourt, de Beauvoir was one of the most influential thinkers of her generation. She died in 1986. Lauren Elkin (Translator) Lauren Elkin is the author of several books, including Fl neuse- Women Walk the City. Her co-translation (with Charlotte Mandell) of Claude Arnaud's biography of Jean Cocteau won the 2017 French-American Foundation's translation award. After twenty years in Paris, she now lives in London.


This 'lost' novel by a giant of 20th-century letters reads surprisingly like a French Elena Ferrante... Lauren Elkin's translation is undistractingly smooth... The allure of this other life, as de Beauvoir describes it, remains as powerful in Elkin's translation -- Nikhil Krishnan * Daily Telegraph *
Translated by Lauren Elkin with exquisite finesse, it utterly conveys both de Beauvoir's heady sensuality and its immediate opposite, observant restraint... The Inseparables is a ravishing work of art -- Catherine Taylor * Financial Times *
A succulent taster for those who don't know de Beauvoir's work and, for everyone else, a treat -- Claire Allfree * Daily Mail *

Slim, elegant, achingly tragic and unaffectedly lovely in its evocation of the closeness between girls - and the pressures that sunder them

* Spectator *
A passionate and tragic autobiographical story * Vanity Fair *
Gorgeously written, intelligent, passionate, and in many ways foreshadows such contemporary works as Elena Ferrante's My Brilliant Friend * Oprah Daily *
Here is an attentive and unintimate love, one that relishes the idea of imagining, but never knowing and never delimiting, the infinite expanses of another person's mind -- Merve Emre * New Yorker *
In Lauren Elkin's fine translation, the lucid, sculpted prose can flare into starbursts of introspective sensuality. It touches and grips not just as a portrait of semi-requited teenage ardour...but because Beauvoir gives the torments of belief their due... Its focus and restraint show that, even in maturity, Beauvoir could write like a dutiful daughter of the French classics -- Boyd Tonkin * The Times *
[An] absorbing novel... The Inseparables is a moving coming-of-age tale about two girls battling with who and what they want to be in 20th-century Paris * Monocle *
[The Inseparables] distils subjects that would preoccupy de Beauvoir throughout her career... [and] will introduce some readers to the defining role Lacoin played in de Beauvoir's trailblazing life and career * Economist *
Elegantly translated... The Inseparables...is a rich and rewarding novella -- Kate Kirkpatrick * Literary Review *

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