March 18th, 2013

"L'art difficile de rester assise sur une balançoire" is screaming for success

L’art difficile de rester assise sur une balançoire is the original French title of Emmanuelle Urien ’s new novel, just published on February 21st 2013 by Éditions Denoël. Meaning something like: the difficult art to remain seated on a seesaw. Translation rights already sold into Spanish (Grijalbo/Random House Mondadori) and Catalan (Angle Editorial). While we are expecting offers from several territories any minute! And film production companies are seriously considering the acquisition of film rights... The cover, a design by S. Zygart, can be seen at every bookshop in France these days; in the photo below, the author and her publisher Béatrice Duval the day they met for the first time.

2 art difficile emmanuelle urien couv 1 emmanuelle urien and beatrice duval

This is one of those novels which flows easily and which you read with half a smile from beginning to end. A quality, fun read, a fine mix of literary and commercial. Excellent film material.

What is the novel about?

L’art difficile de rester assise sur une balançoire by Emmanuelle Urien is an intelligent, feminine and highly original novel about a French mother of three, Pauline, who has to deal with three painful facts: a) her husband has cheated on her b) he has cheated on her with her best friend c) on the day that she finds out, her best friend (and husband’s lover) dies unexpectedly. The novel addresses relationships, abandon, loss and identity through an entertaining and engaging plot. It moves between the trivial and the deep, the humorous and the philosophical. Many female readers have pointed out that the novel explains EXACTLY the kind of feelings one goes through after a breakup, especially for women in their 30s and 40s, and has also made them laugh!

Here below, Marc de Gouvenain, from the Pontas team, and Béatrice Duval testing the sticker as "Pick of the Month by Cosmopolitan magazine" that is on the cover of the novel. And the window at the bookshop closest to the author’s home in Toulouse...

4 marc de gouvenain and beatrice duval 3 emmanuelle urien in a bookshop

A blogger said recently: "Reading Emmanuelle Urien we avoid getting depressed".

About the author: Emmanuelle Urien is a tri-lingual translator and successful author of thriller novels (Gallimard) and short story collections (D’un noir si bleu). With L’art difficile de rester assise sure une balançoire she has changed publishing house and genre, but she remains one of France wittiest female literary authors.

More information: Marina Penalva Halpin -