Nobel-prize winner François Mauriac's masterpiece is Thérèse Desqueyroux, the story of a complex woman trapped by provincial life. First published in 1927, this astonishing and daring novel has echoes of Madame Bovary and has recently been made into a ravishing film starring Amélie actress Audrey Tautou.
Thérèse Desqueyroux walks free from court, acquitted of trying to poison her husband. Everyone knew she'd tried to do it, but family honour was more important than the truth. As she travels home to the gloomy forests of Argelouse, Thérèse looks back over the marriage that brought her nothing but stifling darkness, and wonders, has she really escaped punishment or is it only just about to begin?
'A great novel ... the brilliance of its structure and the elegance of its prose never fail to take my breath away' - Beryl Bainbridge