Advance reader reviews of French Exit

French Exit

by Patrick deWitt

French Exit by Patrick deWitt X
French Exit by Patrick deWitt
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  • Publishes in USA 
    Aug 28, 2018
    304 pages
    Genre: Novels

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There are currently 20 member reviews
for French Exit
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  • Vicki R. (York, PA)


    Witty, smart and immensely enjoyable!
    Patrick deWitt's new novel "French Exit" is a delightfully fun read. Like his previous books it has a full cast of quirky, unforgettable characters. Frances and her son Malcolm head to Paris after learning that they have squandered away their entire fortune. They bring along with them the family cat, Small Frank who they believe is Frances' late husband. Through riotously funny adventures they meet some very fascinating people that surround them in this time of upheaval. DeWitt's books are just such a pleasure to read although they may not be for the seriously minded!
  • Sue J. (Brookfield, WI)


    Fun Read
    French Exit is a story about a widow, her adult son and an aging cat. Facing financial ruin, they embark on an ocean voyage to Paris for a new beginning. The characters are quirky, but very likable. The mother and son are dependent and devoted to each other in a way that is humorous and unpredictable. French Exit was an enjoyable fun read, I highly recommend it!
  • Lorri


    Perfectly strange
    Read in prepub. Due out August 2018. deWitt takes characters that are so specific, so quirky that they seem a little too unreal and makes them come alive. The book is perfectly strange and funny, but also explores the meaning of family and friendship and the idiosyncrasies of romantic love (who can figure it out?). You've never met anyone like Frances and Malcolm and Little Frank, but once you've read the book you'll wonder how you ever got by without their acquaintance. Recommended for fans of Jonathan Ames, Maria Semple, Kevin Wilson. Would be a fun book group choice.
  • Leslie R. (Lynchburg, VA)


    "Now came strangenesses."
    When I read this first sentence of Chapter 36, I laughed out loud. In an entire book of "strangenesses," it would be hard to conceive of any more. From the beginning, I imagined this book as a play, perhaps an off-Broadway farce. I could picture each character as an actor in costume. One quirky situation followed another as mother and son behaved in the most inexplicable ways. With short chapters and some witty dialogue, this book is an entertaining read. The reader just needs to abandon convention and go along for the ride.
  • Donna W. (Wauwatosa, WI)


    Comic Tale
    French Exit is a truly engaging book. The characters are unique, the story borders on crazy, and everything fits together in such a delightful way that the book is a great comic read. A quick easy read and lots of fun!
  • Shannon L. (Portland, OR)


    A Truly French Exit!
    A "french exit" is defined as rudely leaving without saying goodbye to your host..or slipping out with telling anyone. DeWitt's latest is definitely about slipping away! I don't even know if I liked this book...DeWitt game me characters I loved on one page and hated on the next. One minute I was laughing with them and the next minute I wanted to strangle them. I will admit that the character I cared the most about was an aging cat named "Small Frank." Sometimes he was the only reason I kept reading. As the novel progressed I began to care about our main character, Francis Price, but the verdict is still out about her son. Dewitt writes with such subtle humor, introducing us characters whose personalities are almost beyond our comprehension - the same ones we never know whether to love or hate. If you want a happy, upbeat story with an even happier ending, sit this one out. If you love DeWitt's writing style you will not be disappointed in the French Exit.
  • Vicki H. (Greenwood Village, CO)


    Surreal Fun
    If readers of DeWitt's The Sisters Brothers said it seemed like a Coen Brothers movie, his French Exit falls more into the Wes Anderson camp.  Our characters here are so unconventional, so outré, they deserve Anderson's kitsch.

    Here are two hard-to-like characters — all their choices are wrong, they are not being redeemed in any way by their changing circumstances — and yet I couldn't put the book down. Though their behavior is abominable, Frances and Malcolm are wildly entertaining. Was I wooed by the fresh and witty dialog? Was I frantic to learn how far off the road these two would drive? Or did I just want to see them get their comeuppance?  DeWitt simply had me in "the pull of a well-told story." 

    The ride got bumpy for me when the book reached Paris. Every reader is asked by an author to "carry" scenes and characters "up the hill" of a book. We gladly do it, hoping there's a payoff in the end for all the details we've dutifully ferried. I grew worried, two-thirds of the way through, that I was not going to get a satisfying "wrap up." Indeed, I didn't. But DeWitt was such a great storyteller that it made the hike worthwhile.  I was reminded a bit of Kingsley's Amis's Lucky Jim .... but mostly of Wes Anderson movies. Such is the surreality.
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