French Leave is the story of three siblings — Simon, Garance, and Lola — who ditch a tedious family wedding in order to track down their absent youngest brother, Vincent. Along the way, feelings of camaraderie and nostalgia unite them, and they shed the facades of their adult lives for one idyllic day. When the sun sets and they return to their obligations back home, they are forced to reexamine their lives and the family ties that hold them together.
"For how much longer will we have the strength to tear ourselves away from everyday life and resist? How often will life give us the chance to play hooky? To thumb our noises at it? Or make our little honorarium on the side? When will we lose one another and in what way will the ties be stretched beyond repair? How much longer until we become too old? And I know we were all aware of this. I know what we're like. We're too shy to talk about it, but at that precise moment on our journey, we knew.”
Anna Gavalda is a teacher, author, and magazine writer. Her books include Hunting and Gathering, I Wish Someone Were Waiting for Me Somewhere, and Someone I Loved. She lives in Melun, Seine-et-Marne, France.
Length: 108 pages
Set in: France
Translated by: Alison Anderson