+612 9045 4394
The Elegance Of The Hedgehog - Muriel Barbery

The Elegance Of The Hedgehog

By: Muriel Barbery, Alison Anderson (Translator)


Published: 20th October 2009
In Stock. Ships today or next business day from Australia
RRP $24.99

This book has been an absolute bestseller for Booktopia and consistently in the top of the charts since its original release. Highly recommended!

An enchanting "New York Times" and international bestseller and award-winner about life, art, literature, philosophy, culture, class, privilege, and power, seen through the eyes of a 54-year old French concierge and a precocious but troubled 12-year-old girl.

Renee Michel is the 54-year-old concierge of a luxury Paris apartment building. Her exterior ("short, ugly, and plump") and demeanor ("poor, discreet, and insignificant") belie her keen, questing mind and profound erudition.

Paloma Josse is a 12-year-old genius who behaves as everyone expects her to behave: a mediocre pre-teen high on adolescent subculture, a good but not outstanding student, an obedient if obstinate daughter. She plans to kill herself on the sixteenth of June, her thirteenth birthday.

Both Renee and Paloma hide their true talents and finest qualities from the bourgeois families around them, until a wealthy Japanese gentleman named Ozu moves into building. Only he sees through them, perceiving the secret that haunts Renee, winning Paloma's trust, and helping the two discover their kindred souls. Moving, funny, tender, and triumphant, Barbery's novel exalts the quiet victories of the inconspicuous among us.

About the Author

Muriel Barbery was born May 28th, 1969 in Casablanca, Morocco. She was raised in France. She entered the École muriel_barberyNormale Supérieure de Fontenay-Saint-Cloud in 1990 and obtained her agrégation in philosophy in 1993. She then taught philosophy at the Université de Bourgogne, in a lycée, and at the Saint-Lô IUFM. She currently lives in Japan with her husband Stéphane.

She is a French novelist and professor of philosophy. She has written two books that has been translated into English, Gourmet Rhapsody (original title Une Gourmandise, 2000) and The Elegance of the Hedgehog (original title: L’Élégance du hérisson, 2006).



by PowerReviews
The Elegance Of The Hedgehog

(based on 1 review)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars



  • 4 Stars



  • 3 Stars



  • 2 Stars



  • 1 Stars



Reviewed by 1 customer

Displaying review 1

Back to top


A treasure that bears rereading


from Melbourne Australia

About Me Bookworm

Verified Buyer


  • Deserves Multiple Readings
  • Engaging Characters
  • Well Written


    Best Uses

    • Gift
    • Older Readers

    Comments about The Elegance Of The Hedgehog:

    The best thing since "Sophie's World" to introduce readers to the great philosophical ideas in a heart-warming relationship between a precocious 12 year old who plans to commit suicide because life is pointless and the middle-aged woman who is the concierge in her wealthy Parisian apartment. Not what you might expect - better!

    Displaying review 1

    Back to top

    ISBN: 9781906040185
    ISBN-10: 1906040184
    Audience: General
    Format: Paperback
    Language: English
    Number Of Pages: 320
    Published: 20th October 2009
    Publisher: Gallic Books
    Country of Publication: GB
    Dimensions (cm): 19.9 x 12.9  x 2.4
    Weight (kg): 0.3