The Ecstasy (Part One)

Paris! Oh, those heady days of Summer 2002!
Here’s the cover of Noces Indiennes:

Flammarion had gone all out, mobilising the French media and pushing my precious first book to the forefront.
The media pricked their little French ears; after all, Flammarion is one of France’s most presitigious publishers, counting the likes of prizewinning, controversial, and, according to a publicist I spoke to, utterly despicable Michel Houellebecq among its authors.
I was in Paris Match and Le Monde and France 2 TV.
Readers bought the book.
Here’s a slightly wonky French bestseller list from July 2002:

Do you see me there, at number 6?
You might need a magnifying glass.
Or just take my word for it.
That’s right, just one notch below John Irving’s The Fourth Hand, and several above John Grisham’s Last Juror, at number 15.
It really happened. Sometimes I need to pinch myself. It really happened.
It flew off the Paris shelves.
All that summer long, Noces Indiennes bounced up and down among the likes of Mary Higgins Clark and Stephen King.
A writer’s dream come true. right?
Oh, vanity of vanities, and all is vanity!
That was the Ecstasy.


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