Patrick Suskind was born in 1949. He studied history in Munich and was a writer for television before he wrote Perfume. His second novel, The Pidgeon, later adapted as a play, was first staged at teh BAC Theater in London in May 1993. His play The Double Bass was first staged in Munich in 1981 and has since become one of the most performed plays in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. It has also been performed at the Edinburgh Festival and at the Royal National Theatre in London. His novella The Story of Mr Sommer (1992) has, like Perfume, been a huge success all over the world, and his Three Stories and a Reflection was published in 1996. Patrick Suskind lives in Munich.
Penguin's unabridged production of this international best seller is a thoroughly captivating production. Suskind's demented protagonist, Jean-Baptist Grenouille, is a "gifted abomination" whose highly developed sense of smell could easily make him the greatest perfumer of all time. Given the general stench of 18th-century cities, good perfumers were held in high regard. However, Grenouille the misfit, scorned by society throughout his life, hasn't the heart to create pretty perfumes for society's elite. When he finally does earn the adoration of the masses through his twisted genius, he decides that he would much prefer to "exterminate all these stupid, stinking people from the earth." Reader Sean Barrett does not overdramatize the often sensational events here but instead relates them with a measured, detached air that perfectly captures Suskind's cool tone. Also, his reserved narrative style allows listeners to appreciate Suskind's expert use of language (passages from this novel can be found in dictionaries of similes). This extraordinary production is highly recommended for all serious fiction collections.‘Beth Farrell, Portage Cty. Dist. Lib., Ohio