French crime novel “The Mad and the Bad” published in Persian

December 20, 2021 - 18:38

TEHRAN – French crime novelist Jean-Patrick Manchette’s book “The Mad and the Bad” has been published in Persian.

Saless is the publisher of the novel translated into Persian by Mohammad-Ali Sadeqi.

The original edition translated into English by Donald Nicholson-Smith was published in 2014 by NYRB Classics with an introduction by James Sallis. It won the French-American Foundation Translation Prize for Fiction.

The book tells the story of Michel Hartog, a onetime architect who is a powerful businessman and famous philanthropist whose immense fortune has just grown that much greater following the death of his brother in an accident. 

Peter is his orphaned nephew, a spoiled brat. Julie is in an insane asylum. Thompson is a hired gunman with a serious ulcer. Michel hires Julie to look after Peter. And he hires Thompson to kill them. Julie and Peter escape. Thompson pursues. Bullets fly. Bodies accumulate.

The craziness is just getting started.

Like Jean-Patrick Manchette’s celebrated “Fatale”, “The Mad and the Bad” is a clear-eyed, cold-blooded, pitch-perfect work of creative destruction.

Manchette was a French crime novelist credited with reinventing and reinvigorating the genre. He wrote ten short novels in the seventies and early eighties, and is widely recognized as the foremost French crime fiction author of the 1970s and 1980s. 

His stories are violent, existentialist explorations of the human condition and French society.

Manchette was politically to the left and his writing reflects this through his analysis of social positions and culture. 

His books are reminiscent of the nouvelle vague crime films of Jean-Pierre Melville, employing a similarly cool, existential style on a typically American genre.

Photo: Front cover of the Persian translation of Jean-Patrick Manchette’s book “The Mad and the Bad”.


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