In The Elegance of the Hedgehog, we meet Renée, a 54-year-old, overweight, unattractive widow who has been the concierge at 7 rue de Grenelle for 27 years. Then there is Paloma Josse, a 12-year-old intellectual prodigy whose rich and prominent family is living in the building. Each spends her days at this “fine hôtel particulier” considering the mysterious ways of the upper class and pondering what life is worth. The philosophical quest that is principal in the minds of both women is a search for beauty.
Renée cares for the building, has tea with her friend Manuela, reads, watches foreign films, listens to music, and talks to her cat. Paloma fills her diaries with daily observations and theories, all the while planning to commit suicide on her 13th birthday unless she finds a reason to stick around. When Kakuro Ozu moves into the building, taking over the deceased M. Arthens’ 4th floor home, Renée and Paloma formally meet. In their search for life’s raison d’être, M. Ozu helps shine a light on both of their paths.
This Bookclub-in-a-Box PDF discussion guide (79 pages) for Muriel Barbery's novel The Elegance of the Hedgehog includes:
• Novel synopsis
• Author information
• Character analysis
• Focus points and themes
• Writing style and structure
• Important quotes from the novel
• Book club discussion questions
Discussion guide does not include the novel itself. This product is a PDF file — if you do not receive an email receipt with download link within a few minutes of completing your order, check your spam folder, then contact us.