Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Mygale” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


3.91  ·  Rating Details ·  1,447 Ratings  ·  168 Reviews
Richard Lafargue is an eminent plastic surgeon haunted by dirty secrets. He has an operating theatre in the basement of his chateau and keeps his partner Eve imprisoned in her bedroom, a room he has equipped with an intercom and 300-watt speakers through which he bellows orders. Eve is only allowed out to be paraded at cocktail parties and on the last Sunday of each month, ...more
Paperback, 129 pages
Published January 1st 2003 by City Lights Publishers (first published 1984)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Mygale, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Mygale

Fight Club by Chuck PalahniukA Clockwork Orange by Anthony BurgessAmerican Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis1984 by George OrwellThe Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
Best Transgressive Fiction
70th out of 551 books — 579 voters
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-ExupéryLes Misérables by Victor HugoThe Stranger by Albert CamusThe Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre DumasMadame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
Best French Literature
201st out of 663 books — 1,235 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Dec 18, 2015 Alejandro rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, romance, novel
I watched the film adaptation by Pedro Almodovar titled "The Skin I Live in" ("La Piel que Habito") in 2011. I liked a lot the movie and when I found out that it was based on a novel, I decided that eventually I will read it.

Finally it happened. First of all, taking out the major surprise in the storyline (don't worry, I won't spoil it), both stories are quite different, so it helped to appreciate the novel, while being the original story, and still have some surprises or unexpected developments
Helen Stavraki
Oct 02, 2016 Helen Stavraki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best
Οι ουράνιες θεϊκές και δαιμονικες δυνάμεις να σε φυλάνε απο τους ιστούς της αράχνης που υφαίνονται σε αυτή τη δηλητηριώδη ιστορία.
Ανατριχιαστική- σκοτεινή - φρικτή-ευχάριστα θα έλεγα εκδικητική απο την πλευρά του αρρωστημένου πατέρα-ακραία ερωτική και καθόλου αστυνομική αυτή η επιεικώς τέλεια γραφή σε νοσηρό φόντο.

Αρχίζει η εξιστόρηση μιας βατής ιστορίας μυστηρίου τριών επιπέδων - ανώμαλων θα έλεγα- ανεξάρτητων μεταξύ τους τουλάχιστον ως ένα σημείο. Αργότερα όσο προχωράει η ανάγνωση και γνωρίζ
JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust
Sep 01, 2014 JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust by: Beth

I started this book w/ minimal expectations and in return they were met 10 fold. TARANTULA is MOST DEFINITELY NOT FOR EVERYONE …. This tale will test the readers patients, endurance, frustration level and fundamental math skills **1+1= ? .. WHAT?**...... Here's a little glimpse of emotions you can expect to endure....

..okay, you’ve been warned.

The chaos begins with the Dapper Richard Lafargue summoning Eve in this manner--> "For God sakes, hurry up you
Kynthos-the-Archer (Kyn)
Aug 15, 2014 Kynthos-the-Archer (Kyn) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who could appreciate a good disturbing mind fuqking - crime and psychological thriller genre.

Please try to refrain from looking at my shelf tags for this book. Unless of course you don't mind spoiling this book before you could get to it. You have been adequately warned.

Rating: 4.5 stars

What a twisted book with a twisted ending to match. I was left aghast and reeling with mixed emotion after finishing it.

Be ready for a dark and twisted story driven by hate and fear. It all started with a crime of lust and selfish indulgence which lead to the destruction of an innocent young girl. But
Jul 31, 2016 Nellakii❤ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
{*5 STARS*}


Θα ομολογήσω την τελείως αρνητική μου στάση απέναντι στο συγκεκριμένο βιβλίο!
Με βαριά καρδιά ξεκίνησα να το διαβάζω για το χατήρι της μαμάς μου,που με παρότρυνε να το ξεκινήσω,εκθειάζοντάς το μου,μεχρί που με έπεισε!

Στην αρχή παρέμεινα αρκετά δύπιστη,καθώς ξεκινάει η ιστορία χωρί
Carol (StarAngel's Reviews) Allen

My first hunch was correct.....*patting myself on the back

But I LOVED how the author incorporated doubt in that hunch over and over again.

And I especially loved the ending....can you consider that an HEA?? hahahaaa
Maybe you have to be a sick and deranged individual to enjoy this. Or maybe you need to be able to detach yourself a little from your own humanity and perceive human nature with a neutral eye. One thing is clear: Tarantula is not for the faint of heart.

For me, this is hands down the best revenge book I’ve ever read! I seriously can’t imagine a more terrifying form of revenge than the one presented here (and I assure you, I have a wild imagination). Complex type of vengeance also, if you think ab
Lady Vigilante (Feifei)

4.5 SHOCKING STARS!! In order to read this book, perseverance is a must.

Someone take me to a mental hospital:




NEWEST EDIT: Due to some enlightening of certain characters and plot twists, I am reading this one NOW NOW NOW NOW NOW NOW.

Edit: I'll pick this one back up later. I have no darn clue what's going on, and these words aren't making sense to me.


How do you know me
Apr 20, 2014 Beverly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mind-fucks
*****5 Puzzling Stars*****

I am not sure how to begin, I can just tell you as I read this I felt like I was solving a puzzle.

Not a very easy to solve puzzle, at least for this girl, might I add. While I was reading it I had a million different possibilities as to what could possibly be going on.

The story is about Dr. Lafargue, an eccentric plastic surgeon. Dr. Lafargue keeps a woman, Eve, confined in his home. Eve is only permitted to leave the home for dinners, social obligations, oh and...when
Nov 25, 2013 Kelle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars

I don't even know if I can write a review right now. I think I may need some time to digest what I just read.
I'll try to review it anyway.

Was this a romance? Nope, can't say it was but some kind of twisted love came out of this and I'm left here asking "what the hell just happened?" (view spoiler)
Funny thing is I believed I knew what was playing out then I kept reading and started doubting myself, that will teach me go with my gut next time. But
Scarlet Cameo
Sep 22, 2016 Scarlet Cameo rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rc-15

Con un argumento muy interesante el libro se desenvuelve sin sorpresas, lo cual no hace que se torne aburrido pero tampoco conmemora lo impresionante que pudo haber sido sí hubiera tenido sólo un poco más de intensidad.

Richard e Éve mantienen una relación enfermiza, y la dos últimas páginas sí cambiaron mi percepción continuaron con algo que desde la tercera parte intuías pero no estabas del todo seguro sí pasaría. Richard es un personaje completamente enfermo y dañado, pero al que no lográs te
Đorđe Bajić
Aug 22, 2013 Đorđe Bajić rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, crime
Reč je o kratkom romanu koji se brzo čita, a koji još brže očitava ono što je velikog Almodovara privuklo ovom delu iz sada već davne 1984. godine. Tu je pre svega poigravanje sa pitanjima polnog i rodnog, potom uvek filmski potentan motiv osvete, te kao i kod većine francuskih literata sasvim odomaćena nonšalancija u prikazivanju devijantnog, bizarnog i/ili društveno neprihvatljivog. Da ne bude zabune, Žonkeova Tarantula je roman kao stvoren za ekranizaciju (a čini se da je i sam autor tako ...more
Carla ☺Did I Say That☺
4.5 *Holy Shit* Stars!!
Wow..where do I begin...first off this book is not for everyone..and I really mean that!!This book will test every ounce of patience you have..but the payoff is worth its wait in gold!!..

In all honesty..there were a few times I said screw done this is going on my DNF shelf..

But I'm so glad I didn't give up..because what a helluva mindfuck this one turn out to be!!
Now im gonna be vague with this one because to much info will give this story bare with me!!!
Oct 09, 2014 Silvana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Silvana by: JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust
I love my dark reads, I love them clever, to leave me guessing and at the end to be completely blown away by elements I didn't forsee coming. Tarantula does that and more, what a clever short novel that packed a big punch, full of twists and turns. It sure left an big impact, the writing was skillful and engaging.

The main plot narrates the story of expert plastic surgeon, Richard Lafargue, a mysterious character who keeps a woman, Eve, captive in his home. Richard uses Eve to perform for him wit
Jan 20, 2015 Mizuki rated it it was amazing
Take my words, This book is fascinating.

The story is a brilliant but bizarre mixture of thriller and erotica, a complicative, finely crafted tale of revenge and suffering, domination and submission, (both mental and physical) abuse and tenderness, love and hate. It shows us a heart-stoppingly violent power struggle between two 'men' and two 'women', it revealed the complicated relationship between predator and prey, prisoner and jailer.

It's difficult to comment on Mygale without spoiling the su
Jun 26, 2013 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
OMFG two things came to mind when I was finished reading this one was pure revenge and just the karma bites you in the ass kind either and the other was coincidence on an epic scale and I can say no more with out writing spoilers in here (which I won't do).

This book was the biggest mind-fcuk I have ever read and I'm left not sure how I feel about any of the characters I blame Mygale for what he did? well yes but based on his reasons how can I? do I feel sorry for Eve? well yes but based
Lissett Silva Ordosgoitti
2015 Reading Challenge #3: Un libro convertido en película.

Novela corta de lectura rápida por la ágil escritura del autor. Esta tiene como personajes principales a Richard, Éve y Viviane y muestra como sus vidas se entrelazan por un delito acontecido en el pasado. La historia muestra el lado oscuro de la humanidad y los limites que estamos dispuestos a romper con tal de hacer justicia por nuestra cuenta. Ojo por ojo, diente por diente . En lo personal es una historia directa, cruda, llena de
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ TrixieTracy Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ
It's not often I pick up a short book and give it a 5 stars (if ever?) but this one really appealed to my inner dark and twisted psyche.

What doesn't usually work for me in short reads is they tend to miss out the build up of characters and momentum of a plot. However in this, the ambiguity of both the characters and plot is all part of the story line that builds its own momentum and impetus.

The writing is simple but effective, the story unique and base, together they are unusually seductive but
Nov 24, 2012 Sophie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

What a beautiful monstrosity of a book! I loved it, every twisted part of it. The story centres on famed plastic surgeon Richard Lafargue who has many secrets (ones you can't even begin to imagine to know) and Eve, his partner, who he keeps looked away in her room and forces her to do unspeakable things. Obviously it's an intriguing plot however nothing can really prepare you for Lafargue's reasoning behind his actions and the final outcome. Written by Thierry Jonquet, this makes for a must rea
I hate Almodovar *ducks beer bottles* but I love Thierry Jonquet, and that's one of the reasons why I hate Almodovar, because I love Thierry Jonquet.

Did I mention that I hate Almodovar?
Watching the film first may have been a mistake. The emotional punch and surprise were lost because I already knew the twist. Despite this however, 'Tarantula' was well written and translated and developed slowly, keeping it's sense of mystery for a final showdown at the end. If you haven't seen the film, it's absolutely brilliant. A perfect rendering of this dark tale, in which no one is the hero.
Jenna~Ice Queen~Dreams
Ahhh!!! Great book! Can't believe that ending!!
May 27, 2012 Joel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clocking in at around 120pp., Jonquet’s Mygale is a fast read indeed with a few twists and turns, one which in particular is a bit incongruous with what has happened before but which the movie totally ignored.

There were two main characters in the novel: Richard Lafargue, a renowned plastic surgeon, and Eve, who may or may not be his girlfriend. Lafarque has a weird penchant for humiliating Even when it suits him. He finds Johns for her and he watches from a distance and vicariously lives off thi
Nov 05, 2010 Tosh rated it it was amazing
A great 'making you pay' story that reminds me of Franju's "Eyes Without a Face." It has that slightly surreal horror aspect to it. And many years later I am in Paris and looking for something to read in English, I found Joquet's "Tarantula." I purchased it and once I got on the plane i realized it was the British edition of "Mygale." So that was a disappointing moment. But alas I re-read the book.

Its a masterpiece! As I mentioned it does have that Franju horror aspect, but it is also a very nas
Mariano Hortal
No vi la película de Almodóvar, pero sí he leído esta joya perversa donde las casualidades se convierten en un leitmotif en sí mismas. Hay que reconocer que la mente maquiavélica del francés crea una de esas tramas donde todo es posible y el grado de enrevesamiento, a pesar de todo, resulta muy refrescante para el verano. No apto para estómagos sensibles…
Jul 09, 2016 έρις rated it really liked it
Alex Ronk
Aug 14, 2013 Alex Ronk rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hace unos meses hable sobre la película basada en éste libro pero que no se llama igual; La piel que habito
y de hecho no planeaba leer el libro, simplemente paso y aunque es realmente corto me llevo más tiempo de lo que creí porque a veces tengo tantas otras cosas que hacer que no me doy el tiempo suficiente de leer.

Bien pueden ir al link sobre la película y la historia principal del libro no quedará arruinada, eso es una promesa, al menos claro que la vean antes de leer el libro como me paso a
Urenna Sander
Jan 22, 2014 Urenna Sander rated it it was amazing
Mygale is the story of an esteemed plastic surgeon, Dr. Richard Lafargue, tracks down and imprisons the young man (Vincent) who raped his daughter. The hostage does not divulge he and a friend, named Alex, molested the physician’s daughter.
Four years later, with Vincent still missing, in a strange twist of fate, Alex robs a bank and kills a police officer. With his face caught on tape, police distribute Alex’s picture throughout France. To escape, Alex will require a new identity.
While in hidi
I saw Pedro Almodóvar’s film The Skin I live In before discovering this novel and was blown away by it. Reading this has blown me away once again and will remain in my memory for quite some time. This book (packed into just over 100 pages) has left me emotionally reeling, which doesn’t happen often enough.

This has been mentioned in previous reviews here that the film and novel (although the main plot remains) will be a totally different experience and advise all to do both.
I’m glad that I could
Mar 14, 2015 George rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime-mystery
Από την μια έχουμε τον πλαστικό χειρουργό διεθνούς φήμης Ρισάρ Λαφάργκ, ο οποίος κρατά κλειδωμένη σε ένα δωμάτιο του σπιτιού του την Εύα, μια νεαρή γυναίκα, την οποία την βγάζει στο κλαρί.

Από την άλλη έχουμε τον Αλέξ, έναν εγκληματία, που λήστεψε μια τράπεζα, σκοτώνοντας έναν αστυνομικό κατά την διαφυγή του και τώρα κρύβεται μιας και καταζητείται σε ολόκληρη την χώρα.

Και στην μέση έχουμε έναν μονόλογο, η αφήγηση του οποίου γίνεται σε δεύτερο πρόσωπο, ενός νεαρού άντρα που κρατείται γυμνός σε έ
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
More.. 1 17 Apr 28, 2012 03:13PM  
  • Falling Angels
  • 跪いて靴にキスを [Hizamazuite Kutsu ni Kiss wo] [Kneel Down and Kiss my Boots] (星の館 [Hoshi no Yakata], #1)
  • Father Figure
  • Angel (Angel, #1)
  • Dead to the World (Water Lovers of Sirilon #3)
  • Kraken
  • Winner Takes All: Master/Slave Fantasies by Christopher Pierce
  • Hell and Beyond (Broken, #2)
  • Senseless
  • The Copper Horse: Fear (Zombie Gentlemen) (The Copper Horse #1)
  • Feng Yu Jiu Tian (Novel)
  • Want Me
  • Cruel to be Kind: Novel
  • The Merman
  • Soulless
  • November (November, #1)
  • A Private Hunger
  • Pathfinder
Thierry Jonquet was a French writer who specialised in crime novels with political themes. he was born in Paris; his most recent and best known novel outside of France was Mygale (2003), which was published in English translation as Tarantula in 2005 (Serpent's Tail). He wrote over 20 novels in French, including Le bal des débris, Moloch and Rouge c'est la vie.

Jonquet died aged 55 in hospital in P
More about Thierry Jonquet...

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“Tu n’étais plus qu’un insecte prisonnier d’une araignée repue, qui te gardait en réserve pour un repas à venir. Elle t’avait capturé pour te savourer en toute quiétude, quand l’envie lui viendrait de goûter ton sang. Tu imaginais ses pattes velues, ses gros yeux globuleux, implacables, son ventre mou, gorgé de viande, vibrant, gélatineux, et ses crocs venimeux, sa bouche noire qui allait te sucer la vie.” 1 likes
“Tu as compté les heures, observant avec ravissement la course des aiguilles. Le temps était fictif : était-il dix heures ou vingt-deux heures, mardi ou dimanche ? Cela n’avait pas d’importance ; de nouveau tu pouvais régulariser ta vie, à midi j’ai faim, à minuit sommeil. Un rythme, quelque chose à quoi se raccrocher.” 1 likes
More quotes…