By November 7, 2006 1 Comments Read More →

Littell Wins the Goncourt

Just call him Lance Armstrong. Jonathan Littell has won France’s top literary prize, the Prix Goncourt–the first American to do so–for his book Les Bienveillantes (“The Kindly Ones”).

The cash award? About $12.50. But the book, which already won the Academie Francaise Grand Prix du Roman, should enjoy a slight sales boost. According to Bloomberg:

French sales of the book, originally forecast at 12,000, have already pushed up toward 280,000. English rights to the book have been sold in the U.S. to News Corp.’s HarperCollins and in the U.K. to Chatto & Windus, an imprint of Bertelsmann AG’s Random House. German rights to the book have been sold to Berlin Verlag.

Jonathan Littell is the son of Robert Littell, just in case you were wondering, although he sent the novel out under the pseudonym “Jean Petit.”

Likely Stories has been unable to confirm reports that Jonathan Littell, an intensely private man, has been seen wearing a “LIVESTRONG” wristband.

I just hope he’s prepared for the doping allegations.

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About the Author:

Keir Graff is the editor of Booklist Online and the author of five books. His most recent is the middle-grade novel, The Other Felix.