Review of the book “The Confidant” by Helene Gremillon
Review by Ben Macnair
Helene Gremillon’s new novel ‘The Confidant’ is the type of book that hooks you from the beginning, and by the careful introduction of new characters, events and a narrative drive that flits from time to time. A deep,long held family secret event occured in pre war France, but the novel’s narrator, Camille receives letters about it in her life in 1970’s Paris. Into her ordered life, comes the tale of Annie, and her bourgeois friend Madame M, and Camille finds her own life effected by events that occured more than a half century earlier. This is a novel that contains the finest story-telling, pathos, and an understanding of the true nature of secrets, and unseen consequences. It is one of those novels that will leave you with questions, and a lot to discuss later, for there is a lot of ambiguity within the novel, both in terms of characters, and events. It is a fine read, with plenty for a book group to discuss.