Phaedra Patrick’s June Book Pick

Another month, another Darley Anderson Author’s Book Club Pick!

For June’s book pick, we’ve asked the wonderful Phaedra Patrick to give us all a dose of much-needed reading inspiration. Phaedra’s signature charm and heartwarming stories have brought her novels great international success and she has now been published into 22 languages – including Russian, Korean and Turkish. Her most recent title, The Secrets of Sunshine, was published on May 14th and is available in Paperback and Ebook. Her other titles include The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper, Wishes Under the Willow Tree, and The Library of Lost and Found, which was reviewed as our March book pick.

And now for Phaedra’s Book Club Pick: The President’s Hat by Antoine Laurain!

Why Phaedra loves it…

For a charming read, that offers pure escapism during these strange times, I’d like to recommend The President’s Hat by Antoine Laurain. Affectionate, funny and wise, it’s set in the eighties and tells the story of accountant Daniel, who discovers President Mitterrand has left his hat behind in a French restaurant, and decides to keep it. When Daniel pops it on his head he begins to feel very, well . . . different.

The stylish hat begins a journey of its own as it passes on from Daniel to a host of other unconnected Parisians. The book gives us a glimpse into their lives and how the hat changes their fortunes when they wear it, whether that’s a little good luck, a new positive attitude, or refreshed courage. And, as the hat moves on, the reader experiences the same uplift in spirits.

After the reading the book, I was fortunate to meet Antoine on a hot summer’s day for a coffee in Paris, where we talked about our writing. He was just as charming, and French, as the characters he writes about. All his books are brilliant, but The President’s Hat was the first I read by him, so will always hold a special place in my heart. Translated from French into English, this short, sweet book has the timeless air of a fable.

About the Author

Antoine Laurain is a novelist, screenwriter, journalist, director and collector of antique keys. He is the author of the best-selling novels The President’s Hat and The Red Notebook.

Antoine’s, fairytale-like novel The President’s Hat was acclaimed by critics, readers and booksellers, who awarded it the Prix Landerneau Découvertes. In the UK, it was a Waterstones Book Club and ABA Indies Introduce pick. Unsurprisingly, the novel quickly climbed into a Kindle Top 5 bestseller. Since then, The President’s Hat has been adapted for television in France.

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