“Desarthe is less opaque than her (equally successful) contemporary, Marie Darrieussecq, but she is as daring and imaginative a writer.”

The Guardian

Hunting Party

Agnès Desarthe

The unsuspecting member of a hunting party in the French countryside, Tristan is out of place.

Cajoled into going by his wife, who is anxious to ingratiate herself with the locals of their new village, Tristan’s companions are Pastis-swilling businessmen and tough guys with designs beyond catching dinner. 

Gentle, reflective Tristan has no intention of killing anything, so when his shot inadvertently grazes a rabbit, he saves the animal and hides it in his bag before the others notice. Tristan soon finds himself deeply connected to the wounded rabbit, whose voice comes alive to share its wisdom with the young man.

Suddenly, the weather turns and a terrible storm descends upon the party, as well as their village. In the valley below, the rushing water exposes the close-knit community’s secrets and indiscretions, while Tristan and the rabbit must confront something far worse.