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The great swindle / Pierre Lemaitre ; translated from the French by Frank Wynne.

By: Lemaître, Pierre, 1951- [author.].
Contributor(s): Wynne, Frank [translator.].
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: London : MacLehose Press, 2015Description: 461 pages ; 24 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9780857053244.Uniform titles: Au revoir là-haut. English Subject(s): World War, 1914-1918 -- Fiction | Veterans -- France -- Fiction | Swindlers and swindling -- Fiction | French fiction -- Translations into English | France -- History -- 1914-1940 -- FictionGenre/Form: War fiction. | Historical fiction.DDC classification: 843.92 Awards: The Dagger Awards : International Dagger - for Crime Fiction translated into English and published in the UK, Winner 2016 | Winner of the Prix Goncourt in 2013.Summary: "The year is 1918, the war on the Western Front all but over. An ambitious officer, Lieutenant Henry D'Aulnay-Pradelle, sends two soldiers over the top and then surreptitiously shoots them in the back to incite his men to attack the German lines. When another of D'Aulnay-Pradelle's soldiers, Albert Maillard, reaches the bodies and discovers how they died, the lieutenant shoves him into a shell hole to silence him. Albert is rescued by fellow soldier, the artist Edouard Péricourt, who takes a bullet in the face. The war ends and both men recover, but Edouard is permanently disfigured, and fakes his death to prevent his family from seeing him as a cripple. In gratitude for Edouard's rescue, Albert becomes the injured man's companion and caregiver. Finding that the postwar gratitude for the soldiers' service is nothing more than lip-service to an empty idea, the two men scramble to survive, ultimately devising a scam to take money for never-to-be-built war memorials from small towns. Meanwhile, Lieutenant Pradelle has married Edouard's sister Madeline and is running a scam of his own that involves the exhumation of war victims. In this sorrowful, heart-searching novel, the interwoven lives of these three men create a tapestry of the human condition as seen through the lens of war, revealing brutality and compassion, heroism and cowardice, in equal measure."--Provided by publisher.
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

October 1918: the war on the Western Front is all but over. Desperate for one last chance of promotion, the ambitious Lieutenant Henri d'Aulnay Pradelle sends two scouts over the top, and secretly shoots them in the back to incite his men to heroic action once more.

And so is set in motion a series of devastating events that will inextricably bind together the fates and fortunes of Pradelle and the two soldiers who witness his crime: Albert Maillard and Édouard Péricourt.

Back in civilian life, Albert and Édouard struggle to adjust to a society whose reverence for its dead cannot quite match its resentment for those who survived. But the two soldiers conspire to enact an audacious form of revenge against the country that abandoned them to penury and despair, with a scheme to swindle the whole of France on an epic scale.

Meanwhile, believing her brother killed in action, Édouard's sister Madeleine has married Pradelle, who is running a little scam of his own...

First published in French as Au revoir là-haut by Editions Albin Michel, Paris, in 2013.

"The year is 1918, the war on the Western Front all but over. An ambitious officer, Lieutenant Henry D'Aulnay-Pradelle, sends two soldiers over the top and then surreptitiously shoots them in the back to incite his men to attack the German lines. When another of D'Aulnay-Pradelle's soldiers, Albert Maillard, reaches the bodies and discovers how they died, the lieutenant shoves him into a shell hole to silence him. Albert is rescued by fellow soldier, the artist Edouard Péricourt, who takes a bullet in the face. The war ends and both men recover, but Edouard is permanently disfigured, and fakes his death to prevent his family from seeing him as a cripple. In gratitude for Edouard's rescue, Albert becomes the injured man's companion and caregiver. Finding that the postwar gratitude for the soldiers' service is nothing more than lip-service to an empty idea, the two men scramble to survive, ultimately devising a scam to take money for never-to-be-built war memorials from small towns. Meanwhile, Lieutenant Pradelle has married Edouard's sister Madeline and is running a scam of his own that involves the exhumation of war victims. In this sorrowful, heart-searching novel, the interwoven lives of these three men create a tapestry of the human condition as seen through the lens of war, revealing brutality and compassion, heroism and cowardice, in equal measure."--Provided by publisher.

In English, translated from the French.

Daggers2016

The Dagger Awards : International Dagger - for Crime Fiction translated into English and published in the UK, Winner 2016

Winner of the Prix Goncourt in 2013.

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