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In the fascist grip

A French widower’s horror at his elder son’s involvement with the Front National grows ever deeper as violence escalates

11 March 2023

9:00 AM

11 March 2023

9:00 AM

What You Need From the Night Laurent Petitmangin, translated by Shaun Whiteside

Picador, pp.160, 12.99

The unnamed narrator of Laurent Petitmangin’s prizewinning first novel, What You Need From the Night, a middle-aged railway engineer and lifelong socialist, is faced with his worst nightmare when his 24-year-old son Frédéric, known as Fus, joins a violent far-right group.

The narrator lives with his younger son Gillou and Fus in a village in eastern France, near the Luxembourg border.

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