Tag: translation

Shelf Control #51 – 29/07/2022

Happy Friday everyone and welcome to today’s Shelf Control post! Shelf Control is a regular feature on my blog. It’s a meme run by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies… a celebration of the unread books on our shelves! The idea is to pick a book you own but haven’t read and write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

If you want to read more about the Shelf Control feature, check out Lisa’s introductory post.

If I recall correctly, I own today’s featured book on Kindle. I saw this a long time ago but was immediately pulled in by the synopsis, and sneak peak of the opening line, below.

I am trying to read more non-fiction, more so now than never. If you recall my midyear review post, I set myself a goal of reading at least one non-fiction book a month. This book will fit nicely with this challenge. Having reminded myself of the synopsis, I may well be picking this up soon!

Here are the details for today’s book: –


The Adversary: A True Story of Monstrous Deception – Emmanuel Carrère

Genre: Non-fiction / True Crime

Pages: 208

Audience: Adult

Publisher: Picador

Publication Date: 31 Jan 2000



Goodreads – The Adversary

On the Saturday morning of January 9, 1993, while Jean Claude Romand was killing his wife and children, I was with mine in a parent-teacher meeting…

With these chilling first words, acclaimed master of psychological suspense Emmanuel Carrère begins his exploration of the double life of a respectable doctor, 18 years of lies, five murders and the extremes to which ordinary people can go.


My Thoughts…

With this synopsis, I cannot help but think that less is more. There is not a lot of detail to go on, but that opening line really sucks you in. Who is Jean Claude Romand, and what is his story?

From the basic research I’ve done, the answer is, he’s a fraud. He is a man who fails to qualify to become a doctor, lies about getting a job with the World Health Organisation and lives comfortably for 18 years off of other people’s money. However, when the web of lies risks coming undone, he murders those closest to him.

I’ll admit, I have never heard of this case before. This book is translated from French, so it’s not necessarily a story you would know about. Other books and even films have been made on the subject, so you may be more familiar with the story than I am. I can’t wait to dive into this particular book, as Jean is clearly a very sinister character. My understanding is that the author initially wanted to complete some kind of psychological assessment with this book, however he wasn’t able to do so.

I am looking forward to coming to my own conclusions about this man and his behaviour. I’m a huge fan of psychology, and it’s for this reason that I wanted to read this book!

Have you read The Adversary, watched any of the films about Jean Claude Romand, or read any other true crime books that you would recommend?

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