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The President's Hat Paperback – September 3, 2013
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'As entertaining as it is original, this is a story to enjoy like a chocolate with a surprise centre.' Marie France 'An enjoyable trip into the heart of the 1980s' Le Figaro 'Subtle, inventive, absorbing and often funny.' L'Avenir 'Impossible to resist' L'Express
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Top Customer Reviews
It's a nice fairy story but I have to say it's not nearly as entertaining or compelling as the author's other listed work, "The Red Notebook" which for me had more emotional resonance.
I think there's a place for this kind of whimsical entertainment -- but I don't understand all the prizes it has been nominated for. The author has clearly tapped into some kind of Gallic nostalgia for the innocent days of the 1980s and 1990s when the socialist president finally toppled the Gaullists and took power. It was a time before the Internet and social media -- but it was no age of innocence. However, nostalgia is a pleasant pastime and this book also whiles away some minutes with charm and grace.
After reading this book, I now want to take the paperback and put a note on it *read me* and leave it in the hallway outside the college art classes. It is a couple weeks before spring break... it would be perfect timing. A short and sweet story to make one smile during the couple weeks off.
I am totally doing that now.
Like The Red Notebook which I read a couple of weeks ago, The president's Hat offers a charming read that is such a pleasant relief after all the "dark" literature that is on the market nowadays.
Uplifting and elegant, I absolutely recommend The president's hat for those of you looking for escapism in the best possible way.
The theme has been described in previous reviews so I won't attempt further explanations of the plot; enough to say, get this book and smile your way into the lives of the people who were transformed in one way or another by possessing Francois Mitterrand's hat.
Laurain's book is gentle, humorous, and piquant in the style of Alan Bennett's small gem about reading royalty, The Uncommon Reader. If you liked the tone and style of that very English novella, you will probably appreciate the elegant stylishness of this French one, too.
(*Fortuitously, "chapeau" is idiomatic French for 'I TIP MY HAT TO YOU,' a way of saying "congratulations."
This book matches that adjective.
The story centers on the theft of a bowler belonging to Francois Mitterand. One person after another ends up with the hat, which seems to have magical powers in giving people the confidence they need to change their lives for the better.
I cannot wait to read the next book by this author.