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People Like Them

Samira Sedira



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03 August 2021
'Disturbing and powerful ... I loved it' Leila Slimani, author of Lullaby 'Gripping' Independent 'Taut' Guardian 'Tense... cunningly keeps our sympathies shifting' Telegraph There are no monsters. Only humans.

Anna and Constant Guillot and their two daughters live in the peaceful, remote mountain village of Carmac. Everyone in Carmac knows each other, leading simple lives mostly unaffected by the outside world - that is until Bakary and Sylvia Langlois arrive with their three children.

The new family's impressive chalet and expensive cars are in stark contrast with the modesty of those of their neighbours, yet despite their initial differences, the Langlois and the Guillots form an uneasy friendship. But when both families come under financial strain, the underlying class and racial tensions of their relationship reach breaking point, culminating in act of abhorrent violence.

With piercing psychological insight and gripping storytelling, People Like Them asks the questions: How could a seemingly ordinary person commit the most extraordinary crime? And how could their loved ones ever come to terms with what they'd done?

Lullaby meets Little Fires Everywhere, this intense, suspenseful prize-winning novel explores the darker side of human nature - and the terrible things people are capable of.

'Icy and chilling... In sharply drawn sentences, Sedira summons the beauty of a small French village, and the shocking acts of the people inside it' - Flynn Berry, author of the Reese Witherspoon Book Club pick, Northern Spy *Winner of the Prix Eugene Dabit*
By:   Samira Sedira
Imprint:   Bloomsbury
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 135mm, 
Weight:   224g
ISBN:   9781526638601
ISBN 10:   1526638606
Pages:   192
Publication Date:   03 August 2021
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Samira Sedira is a novelist, playwright and actress who was born in Algeria and moved to France with her family as a young girl. In 2008, after two decades of acting for film and the stage, she became a cleaning woman, an experience that filtered into the events of this book. People Like Them is her first novel to be translated into English. Lara Vergnaud is an award-winning translator who specializes in North African literature.

Reviews for People Like Them

[A] taut examination of race and class based on a shocking real-life case ... Sedira lays bare the perils of a callous society dominated by money and status, and the insidious racism that drives an ordinary man to murder. There are no monsters, she claims, only humans -- Lucy Popescu * Observer * People Like Them is disturbing and powerful. It explores the topics of racism and jealousy in a very subtle way. I loved it -- Leila Slimani Chilling ... Sparse, taut ... In this gripping tale, told through courtroom re-enactments and flashbacks, Sedira digs underneath the skin of the casual racism that is key to the crime * Independent * Unsettling ... A complex and nuanced account of how entitlement and resentment, built up over many years, can turn a sense of injustice into disproportionate, murderous fury -- Laura Wilson * Guardian * Sedira packs a powerful punch, exploring the class-race divide ...The graphic murders stand in stark contrast to Sedira's subtle accounting of Constant's tortured path ... Deeply unsettling yet compulsively readable * Kirkus * Taut, tense ... Cunningly keeps our sympathies shifting * Telegraph * The air of danger is sharp and pervasive ... [It has] all the ingredients for explosion: humiliation, envy, racism, rancour and self-pity ... In her translation Lara Vergnaud handles the tension with exemplary restraint * TLS * Will have you up all night with the lights on * Elle * A tense and gripping exploration of race and class * Big Issue North * Icy and chilling, People Like Them is an investigation both of a crime and of the society that nurtured it. The novel's precise, vivid writing brings to mind two other knock-outs from France, The Adversary by Emmanuel Carrere and Based on a True Story by Delphine de Vignan. In sharply drawn sentences, Sedira summons the beauty of a small French village, and the shocking acts of the people inside it -- Flynn Berry Dark and unsettling and brilliantly concise ... I'll be thinking about it for a long time -- Jane Casey Perfectly executed, and prize-worthy * La Marseilleise * Unflinching. Every word in this crisply told story matters, and every seemingly-casual moment is laced with dread, daring you to look away. You won't -- Ani Katz Mesmerising ... As compulsive and unsettling as Lullaby and Little Fires Everywhere * Culture Whisper *

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