Small-town politics can be vicious
Jean-Patrick Manchette (1942-95) was a genre-redefining French crime novelist, screenwriter, critic and translator. Throughout the 60s he supported himself by writing television scripts, young-adult books and film novelisations. In 1971 he published his first novel and embarked on his literary career in earnest, producing ten subsequent works over the course of the next two decades and transforming the crime thriller into a lethal weapon of political satire. Serpent's Tail have also published Manchette's novels The Prone Gunman (adapted for cinema as The Gunman, set to star Sean Penn) and Three to Kill; like Fatale, they are ultra-stylish, pacy, action-packed thrillers with a deadly satirical edge.
France's king of noir fiction ... he writes with a bleak, tragic beauty * The Times * Manchette throws a wrench into the workings of the main characters' lives and gleefully records the anarchy that results * Boston Review * A fist between the eyes, leaving the reader reeling ... so devastating it takes your breath away * Complete Review * Extraordinary ... Aimee is a glorious creation ... the tension and drama ramp up to a bloody and chaotic climax delivered in the same stark, bleak prose as the rest of the story ... That a story so shocking, funny, sad, smart and cool is delivered in only 91 pages is nothing short of a miracle. Uncompromising and utterly convincing, it's a macabre delight from start to finish. -- Doug Johnstone * Big Issue * [An] impressive and enjoyable dark farce * Morning Star *