Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

Based on a True Story

Rate this book
Overwhelmed by the huge success of her latest novel, exhausted and suffering from a crippling inability to write, Delphine meets L.

L. embodies everything Delphine has always secretly admired; she is a glittering image of feminine sophistication and spontaneity and she has an uncanny knack of always saying the right thing. Unusually intuitive, L. senses Delphine’s vulnerability and slowly but deliberately carves herself a niche in the writer’s life. However, as L. makes herself indispensable to Delphine, the intensity of this unexpected friendship manifests itself in increasingly sinister ways. As their lives become more and more entwined, L. threatens Delphine’s identity, both as a writer and as an individual.

This sophisticated psychological thriller skillfully blurs the line between fact and fiction, reality and artifice. Delphine de Vigan has crafted a terrifying, insidious, meta-fictional thriller; a haunting vision of seduction and betrayal; a book which in its hungering for truth implicates the reader, too—even as it holds us in its thrall.

Win a copy of the international sensation that sold half a million copies in France: a chilling work of true-crime literature about a friendship gone terrifyingly toxic and the very nature of reality.

384 pages, Hardcover

First published August 26, 2015

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Delphine de Vigan

28 books1,524 followers
Delphine de Vigan is an award-winning French novelist. She has published several novels for adults. Her breakthrough work was the book No et moi (No and Me) that was awarded the Prix des Libraires (The Booksellers' Prize) in France in 2008.

In 2011, she published a novel Rien ne s'oppose a la nuit (Nothing holds back the night) that deals with a family coping with their mother's bipolar disorder. In her native France, the novel brought her a set of awards, including the prix du roman Fnac (the prize given by the Fnac bookstores) and the prix Renaudot des lycéens.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
2,934 (31%)
4 stars
3,700 (39%)
3 stars
1,995 (21%)
2 stars
595 (6%)
1 star
170 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,103 reviews
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,944 reviews292k followers
May 4, 2020
Let me say, between ourselves, I’m not sure anyone can protect you from yourself.

4 1/2 stars. It was a bit of a strange journey that led me to reading this French import. I fell down one of those Internet rabbit holes and somehow found my way to the GR page of Based on a True Story, which also happened to be available to borrow on my library's Overdrive. So, I read it. Why not?

Maybe I shouldn't describe it as "reading" because it would be more fitting to say this book enchanted me, and in a very unsettling way. I've read so few contemporary French authors (recs, anyone?), but right away I could see some style similarities between this and Slimani's The Perfect Nanny. Completely different stories, of course, but both are thrillingly ominous. Both detail seemingly ordinary day-to-day scenarios, but each capture a similar strange atmosphere: an insidious wrongness behind everything.

Two examples can hardly be considered a pattern, but I am very curious what else is coming out of France that I may be missing.

Based on a True Story follows the writer, Delphine, as she befriends the mysterious L. in the wake of her latest novel's success. L. is a richly-drawn, unusual, fascinating character; one who draws Delphine - and the reader - into her world. As the two become closer, inseparable, Delphine finds herself ever more dependent on L. She subtly worms her way into every aspect of Delphine's life and career-- at first, seemingly, because she wants to be helpful, a good friend, but her motives become more suspect as the story moves along.

It gets really quite dark. L. is a force to be reckoned with-- charismatic, intense, philosophic, and terrifying. What, exactly, does she want from Delphine? And what happens if she doesn't get it? Delphine drew me in herself with her relatable shyness and introversion, but it is the "coiffed, made up and neatly-pressed" L. that makes this book so fascinating.

It's a clever, thoughtful read about writers, stories, characters, fiction and autobiography. About how there's truth in every fiction and fiction in every version of the truth. At times it becomes suggestively meta, but leaves a lot open to interpretation so you can believe whichever version you want. As we already said, there's truth and fiction in them all.

Despite what it may sound like above, it's not a particularly challenging read. The Miller translation was smooth and compelling. I was so into it that I called my mum to talk about the book as soon as I'd finished it. It held me captivated throughout and left my mind reeling once I put it down.

Facebook | Instagram
Profile Image for Caz (littlebookowl).
301 reviews40.3k followers
August 5, 2017
This was so fascinating and cleverly written and constructed. I had questions from page one, and even now after finishing the books my mind keeps running through what happened.
This was slower in pace but the book makes up for it with the intriguing characterisation of L. and the need to know what happens next. You are given enough throughout the book to keep your interest piqued, but not too much that you feel spoiled.

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Blair.
1,745 reviews4,174 followers
April 13, 2020
Whatever you write, you are in the domain of fiction.

This book totally astonished me. The blurb grabbed my attention immediately; my interest was further spiked by a recommendation from an author whose novels I adore. And then I started reading it, and did so with growing delight and relish as I slowly realised it was absolutely perfect. Because this was my experience, I can't help but think that's the best way to approach it, and I don't want to give too much away. But that implies this is the sort of story that can be ruined by 'knowing the twist', which it isn't. It's up to you to decide whether there even is a twist.

Based on a True Story is an enigma: described as a novel, it reads exactly like a memoir. The narrator is a writer named Delphine, disorientated by the success of her most recent novel, which many assume to be based on her own family – to essentially be thinly veiled autobiography. This book is not given a name, but every description of it corresponds exactly to de Vigan's Nothing Holds Back the Night. This holds true throughout the book – anything that's provably accurate about de Vigan is also true of Delphine-the-character.

Delphine is grappling with her new-found fame and preparing to begin work on her next novel when she meets L. at a friend's party. L. is a glamorous woman, the chic, groomed, put-together type Delphine has always admired and envied. She's also confident, verging on forceful, and extremely opinionated, especially about Delphine's writing. She scorns Delphine's idea of writing a novel about a reality TV star, instead urging her to go even further in using her own life as inspiration. Bit by bit, L. becomes a fixture in Delphine's life, acting as confidant, helper and shoulder to cry on; the sister, therapist and personal assistant Delphine didn't know she needed. And Delphine learns L.'s tragic backstory, including the death of her mother and husband. At the same time, Delphine receives a series of hateful letters, purporting to be from a family member and admonishing her for exploiting her relatives' experiences in what they see as a craven quest for fame.

Sometimes Based on a True Story becomes a philosophical two-hander between Delphine and L. as they debate the nature of truth and fiction, where one ends and the other begins, and how much of oneself a writer can (and should) reveal in their work. But it's also something more sinister, as the narrative crawls slowly but inexorably towards the conclusion of L.'s strengthening stranglehold on Delphine's existence. The nature of this is no secret: Delphine tells us at the beginning that L. is the sole reason for my powerlessness [a long period of writer's block so severe that she couldn't even write something as simple as a shopping list] ... the two years that we were friends almost made me stop writing for ever. Tellingly, the epigraphs for each part of the book are taken from Stephen King's Misery.

If I expected anything from Based on a True Story, it was a nuanced study of the psychological effects of insidious harassment, something a little like James Lasdun's Give Me Everything You Have, but exploring a more subtle and outwardly benign form of 'stalking'. And in some ways, that's what I got. If you have ever experienced anything like this, plenty of scenes will have you nodding along and/or grimly hooked (the scene with the guestless 'dinner party' is horror-film creepy). But this novel is like a brilliant hologram, an image that shifts completely with the slightest change of perspective. It is elegantly written – thoroughly Parisian; the prose itself could be described as chic – so it's easy to initially mistake it for a straightforward tale of suspense rather than the fascinating maze of fiction, fact and perception it finally reveals itself to be.

Profile Image for Semjon.
632 reviews324 followers
April 23, 2020
Dieser Roman ist der absolute Wahnsinn! Unbedingte Leseempfehlung für Leser/innen, die sich nicht zwangsläufig mit Figuren in Büchern identifizieren müssen und die Bereitschaft haben, sich auf verschiedene Erzählebenen von einer Autorin führen zu lassen und generell sich als deren Spielball herzugeben. Das Buch hat die verschiedensten Gefühle im Verlauf der Lektüre bei mir ausgelöst, wobei Neugierde, Ungeduld und Skepsis die Stärksten waren. Die Autorin hat es sogar geschafft, dass ich noch im ersten Drittel des Werks es nicht mehr aushielt und die letzten drei Seiten des Romans las. Zum Glück konnte ich im Nachhinein nichts damit anfangen und die Überraschung blieb mir erhalten.

Was ist das für ein Buch? Der Titel suggeriert Authentizität, die Hauptperson heißt Delphine, ist Schriftstellerin, zwei Kinder, aus Paris, mit einem Bucherfolg über die Geschichte ihrer Mutter. Selbst wenn man als Deutscher nicht viel über die bekannte französische Schriftstellerin weiß, dann genügt ein schneller Blick auf Wikipedia, um diese Daten im Lebenslauf von Delphine de Vigan bestätigt zu sehen. Also ist es ein Roman mit autobiografischen Zügen? Doch bald wird man beim Lesen skeptisch, als die unbekannte L. im Leben von Delphine auftaucht, die nicht nur äußerlich wie eine perfekte Version der Autorin daherkommt. Zitate aus Stephen Kings Roman Misery zu Beginn der drei Teile des Buchs lassen aber schon vermuten, dass die Beziehung zwischen Delphine und L. nicht störungsfrei verlaufen wird. Die Fremde drängt sich immer weiter in den Alltag von Delphine und als die in eine Schreibkrise fällt, übernimmt L. immer mehr die Richtung, in die sich das Leben der beiden Frauen entwickelt. Doch wer ist diese L.? Ist das ein wahres Erlebnis über eine Stalkerin? Gibt es sie wirklich? Ist sie vielleicht nur ein Sinnbild für das selbstbewusste, innere Kind der Autorin? Ich kam zu dem Punkt, an dem ich unbedingt wissen musste, WAS ich hier gerade lese. Ich wollte die Geschichte einordnen, bereits beim Lesen den Stil und den Aufbau bewerten. Ich wollte nicht an der Nase herumgeführt werden, nicht über 10 Stunden Lesezeit. Warum muss die Autorin so ausufernd ihre Erlebnisse mit L. beschreiben? Geht das nicht kürzer? Irgendwann wurde ich zornig. Habe ich als Leser nicht das Recht zu erfahren, was ich hier lese? Fiktion oder Wahrheit oder eine Mischung? Am Ende ist klar, dass Delphine de Vigan ganz genau wusste, was sie mit ihrer Leserschaft anstellt. Und letztlich wird alles erst rund mit dem letzten Wort, nein, eigentlich erst mit dem letzten Satzzeichen. Es ist doch nochmal ganz anders als gedacht. So lange wurde ich noch nie auf die Folter gespannt. Sehr raffiniert. Ich liebe es, wenn Bücher es schaffen, solche Gefühlsschwankungen in mir auszulösen.

Ich habe mich gefragt, ob das auch eine Krankheit unserer Sozialen Medienwelt ist, dass man immer etwas Wahres über Menschen erfahren will. Wir alle machen uns gläsern und spiegeln unserer Welt über Fotos und Statusberichte angeblich uns selbst wieder. Aber ist das Realität? Im Buch wird irgendwann gefragt, ob nicht alle Geschichten Fiktion sind, auch die Autobiografien. Gibt es so etwas wie die reine Wahrheit? Reine Fiktion gibt es auf jeden Fall. Ich bin mir sicher, dass dieses Buch gerade in diesem Zeitalter so gut funktioniert und auch polarisiert. Wenn ich mir die schlechten Kritiken hier auf Goodreads durchlese, dann wird genau das kritisiert, was ich lobe: das geheimnisvolle Spiel mit dem Leser. Bist du bereit dich darauf einzulassen? Dann lies das Buch und beobachte dich selbst dabei!
Profile Image for Alexandra .
850 reviews267 followers
May 18, 2020
Vor meiner Autorinnenchallenge, die ich 2017 startete, hatte ich zeitgenössische französischsprachige Schriftstellerinnen gar nicht auf dem Schirm, was sich für mich persönlich als kapitaler Fehler herausstellte. Mittlerweile habe ich diese eklatante Bildungslücke ein bisschen mit Nothomb und Despentes repariert und wollte mich ob meiner bisherigen begeisterten Eindrücke in nächster Zeit Delphine de Vigan zuwenden. War ich also bisher schon höchst angetan, bin ich nun von diesem Werk total hingerissen, völlig von den Socken. Bei all dem Hervorragenden, was ich bisher in dieser Literaturabteilung erlebt habe, sticht dieser Roman nochmals aus den ganzen Juwelen heraus – für mich fast schon der Kohinoor der 1A-Diamanten. Wer meine bisherigen Rezensionen kennt, weiß, dass ich mich selten vor Begeisterung überschlage, weil ich in ausgezeichneten Romanen immer noch ein kleines Haar in der Suppe finde, insofern zählt nun diese Einschätzung doppelt.

Also was bietet diese unmittelbar vom Standpunkt der Ich-Erzählerin geschilderte Geschichte eigentlich? Sprachlich wundervoll konzipiert ist sie vordergründig ein Psychogramm, das die Beziehung einer Schriftstellerin zu ihrem weiblichen Psychopathen-Stalker-Fan beleuchtet, jedoch steckt noch so viel mehr hinter dieser Story, das ich mir nie hätte träumen lassen. Sorry, dass ich diesmal inhaltlich auch etwas spoilern muss, aber anders kann ich meine Begeisterung einfach nicht begründen, also wer jetzt schon restlos überzeugt ist und sich die Überraschung nicht verderben möchte, sollte ungefähr nach dem nächsten Absatz zu lesen aufhören.

Der ganze Plot hat ursprünglich was von Stephen Kings Misery (She), wurde aber viel subtiler und weniger gewalttätig konzipiert. Die Figur der Autorin Delphine de Vigan versucht nach ihrem letzten, sehr erfolgreichen Roman wieder die Kraft aufzubringen, sich einem neuen Thema und Projekt zuzuwenden. In diesem geplanten Intermezzo zwischen zwei arbeitsintensiven Phasen lernt sie ihren weiblichen Fan L. kennen, der sich Schritt für Schritt ganz gemächlich in ihr Leben schleicht und im Prinzip alles übernimmt. Ganz leise und unterschwellig bedient die kluge, wunderschöne, sehr selbstbewusste L. die Ängste und Unsicherheiten der Schriftstellerin Delphine und fördert sie zutage, ohne in der ersten Phase übergriffig zu agieren. Durch den hintergründig aufgebauten Druck verursacht L. bei der Protagonistin eine veritable Schreibblockade. So ganz nebenbei wird hier erstmals dem Leser auch ein ganz tiefer, großartiger Einblick in den Schreibprozess und in die kreativen Kalamitäten gegeben, in die eine Schriftstellerin geraten kann, nachdem sie einen Bestseller gelandet hat und eigentlich gezwungen ist, auch das nächste Mal annähernd dieselbe Qualität wie beim letzten Meisterwerk abzuliefern. Das hat mich frappant an den Sänger Falco erinnert, der unmittelbar an dem Tag, als er als erster deutschsprachiger Sänger die Nummer 1 in den amerikanischen Billboard Charts erreichte, anstatt zu feiern todunglücklich reagiert hat und mit dem Ausspruch „Ab jetzt kann es nur mehr bergab gehen“ in die Musikgeschichte einging.

"Das Schreiben muss eine Suche nach der Wahrheit sein, sonst ist es nichts. Wenn du dich durch das Schreiben nicht kennenzulernen versuchst, wenn du in dir nicht nach dem gräbst, was in dir wohnt, was dich ausmacht, wenn du nicht die Wunden wieder aufreißt, wenn du nicht mit den Händen wühlst und kratzt, wenn du deine Person, deine Herkunft, dein Milieu nicht in Frage stellst, hat es keinen Sinn. Schreiben gibt es nur als Schreiben über sich. Das Übrige zählt nicht."

Nach und nach steigert die Psychopathin L. die Intensität der Interventionen. Sie trennt schrittweise die Figur Delphine von ihrer Umwelt und den Freunden (der Herde), um sie ganz vereinnahmen und besitzen zu können. Dabei vermeidet es L. aber geschickt, einen direkten Kontakt zu Delphines Umfeld aufzubauen, sie agiert immer im Hintergrund. L. bedient in diesem grandiosen Psychogramm vor allem die Ängste der Autorin bezüglich der Schreibblockade, um dann als Retterin aufzuschlagen, indem sie sogar beruflich für die Schriftstellerin einspringt, ihre Korrespondenz erledigt, Absagen erteilt, Vorworte und kleine Texte für andere Autoren verfasst, um Abgabeterminverschiebungen ersucht und Lesungen absolviert. Mittlerweile hat sich L. auch optisch enorm der Protagonistin angenähert und ist sogar bei ihr eingezogen – selbstverständlich nicht unter Zwang, aber Delphine sah sich im Rahmen der Freundschaft moralisch genötigt, L. in einer Notlage zu unterstützen. Alle Autonomiebestrebungen und Versuche, den neuen Roman zu beginnen, zertrümmert L. mit ganz hinterlistigen, viel zu hoch geschraubten Qualitätsansprüchen, die der selbstkritischen Delphine das Gefühl der Unfähigkeit geben. Nach einer Weile ist Delphine so verunsichert, dass sie nicht mal mehr einen Einkaufszettel schreiben kann. Sie spricht auch aus Scham nicht mit ihrem Umfeld über ihre Probleme, einzig L. ist ihre Komplizin in ihrem massiven persönlichen Versagen, dieser Schreibblockade.

"Manchmal kommt mir das etwas abgenutzte Bild einer Spinne in den Sinn, die geduldig ihr Netz webt, oder eines Kraken, der mich mit seinen vielen Fangarmen unschlossen hätte. Aber es war etwas anderes. L. war eher eine leichte, durchscheinende Qualle, die sich auf einen Teil meiner Seele gesetzt hat. Die Berührung hat eine Verbrennung hinterlassen, die aber mit bloßem Auge nicht zu erkennen war. Diese Spur ließ mir scheinbar volle Bewegungsfreiheit. Doch mich band viel mehr an sie, als ich mir hätte vorstellen können."

Mehrmals versucht die Protagonistin, die selbstreflektiert natürlich diese ganze ungesunde Umklammerung ihrer Persönlichkeit ziemlich punktgenau analysiert, sich aus dieser Situation zu befreien. Sie probiert, sich zuerst emotional abzugrenzen und trennt sich schließlich von L., indem sie sie aus der Wohnung und aus ihrem Leben weist. Das ganze Szenario eskaliert dann aber trotzdem nach einem Beinbruch, als die Autorin erneut die Hilfe von L. annimmt und im abgeschiedenen Wochenendhäuschen von Delphines Freund Francois – aufgrund des Trümmerbruchs nun auch noch körperlich sehr immobil – dieser Psychopathin vollends ausgeliefert ist. Nun zeigt sich L.s wahres Gesicht. Sie sperrt Delphine ein und vergiftet sie wochenlang schleichend, um sie total unter Kontrolle zu bringen.

Nach einer sehr spektakulären Flucht glaubt man als Leser*in im Finale der Geschichte angekommen zu sein. Aber weit gefehlt! Nun spielt nicht die Figur, sondern die Autorin De Vigan mit der Realität und der Wahrnehmung. Könnte es sein, dass L. gar nicht existiert hat? Dass die Figur nur eine fiktive Manifestation der psychischen Probleme und der Schreibblockade der Protagonistin ist? Viele, zuvor als unwiderrufliche Fakten präsentierte Episoden könnten auch anders interpretiert werden, denn L. ist Delphines Freunden nie begegnet und ihre Spuren hat sie offensichtlich auch noch restlos beseitigt. Abschließend wird noch etwas Grandioses thematisiert. Wie viel der Protagonistin Delphine ist der Autorin de Vigan tatsächlich passiert? Gekonnt wird mit den Gegensätzen von Wahrheit (Biografie) und reiner Fiktion in der Literatur jongliert und beides ineinander aufgelöst. Wieviel Wahrheit und Wahrhaftigkeit des Lebens von Autor*innen ist in reiner fiktionaler Literatur vorhanden und wie wahr beziehungsweise geschönt ist Biografisches – oder ist es fast gleich? Das ganze Buch kokettiert ja zwangsläufig mit dieser Frage, selbst mein Mann dachte beim ersten Blick auf den Roman, es sei eine Biografie, dabei ist Nach einer wahren Geschichte nur der Titel und nicht die Beschreibung des Werks.

Fazit: Absoluter Buchstoffhöhepunkt 2020! Einzigartig! Ein Teil Thriller, viel Psychologisches und Philosophisches in einer sprachlich grandiosen fiktionalen Geschichte (oder auch nicht?) verpackt. Dieses Werk ist so wundervoll vielschichtig und nicht nur vordergründig, sondern auch auf einer Metaebene so spannend, dass ich eben nur noch hingerissen war.
Profile Image for Milly Cohen.
1,041 reviews285 followers
January 30, 2017
Ufffff, qué librazo! No sé qué es más espeluznante: una tremenda historia autobiográfica hecha novela o una tremenda historia falsa con tintes tan reales que crees que es verdadera. En ambos casos y en ambos libros, la autora me deja estupefacta (una palabra que uso por primera vez!). Me mantuvo interesada y a la expectativa desde el inicio y cada vez más hasta el final. La amo! Me recuerda un poco al Mr Wynn de Baricco aunque nada tienen que ver las historias. Que rico es leer!!!!!
Profile Image for Debbie.
1,751 reviews95 followers
April 26, 2017
I can tell you that I almost gave up on this book. The author took way to long to get into the meat of this story. She just went on and on about L. I was seriously getting sick of L and was ready to throw the book across the room.

Not exactly sure why I did, but I continued on. Am I glad I did? The ending told me why the author carried on, but I still think she went overboard. She could have shortened it a lot more and I think it would have kept me more interested.

Thanks to Bloomsbury and Net Galley for allowing me to read and review this book.
Profile Image for Sadie.
750 reviews163 followers
July 22, 2020
ETA: [Dieses Buch haben wir auch im Papierstau Podcast besprochen (Folge 111: Vive la Résistance)] /ETA

What a wonderful, perfect book. No seriously, I loved everything about this and can't detect any flaws at all.

It's the tale of Delphine, an author who recently came to fame and who has a hard time dealing with her new status as besteller writing star. She feels somewhat insecure and vulnerable and, in this sitaution, embraces the comfort of her new acquaintance L., a rather mysterious woman who takes care of her right away. Delphine and L. become fast friends, they seem to be a match made in heaven. They get each other. But the power dynamics within this relationship start to shift, ever so slowly... So much for the actual content of this book, this and the blurb is basically all you need to know.

What mades this book so perfect for was:

- the story itself. It kept me guessing (From "How far will this go?" to "How could it ever get that far?") right from the start. It has thriller elements, but this isn't a fast-paced action novel, on the contrary:
- the way it is told is rather slow in pace, but that rather supports the whole tale and its setting. It made me feel slowly woven into this story's web, just like Delphine was woven into L.'s web.
- the characterisation of L. (and all other characters including Delphine herself, she's very reflective)
- the writing in general. 100% my kind of writing. I've ordered another book by Delphine de Vigan way before I finished this one, because I adore her writing style. It's so... Parisian, if that makes any sense? It's so chic and exquisit without being pretentious, it just felt real and honest and wonderful.
- the ending. What a fantastic twist. I had ideas of the why, when and how this might conclude, but my ideas proved wrong as I kept on reading. The actual ending is so much better than my speculations. And it kept me thinking.

Highly recommended!

ETA: Because I can't stop thinking about this book and its ending, I want to write down my two cents on how I interpreted and why I enjoyed it so much. Be aware that this might spoil a few plot points and the twist at the ending (or well, my idea of it).
Profile Image for Babywave.
159 reviews53 followers
May 17, 2021
Ich persönlich habe es tatsächlich als ein Highlight empfunden.
Dieses Buch enthält so viele Genres und verbindet sie auf eine extrem intelligente Art und Weise miteinander. Man kann dieses Buch als Thriller lesen, aber auch noch auf diversen anderen Ebenen. Außerdem regt es extrem zum Nachdenken an, wenn es um Fiktion und Realität geht....... Ich würde das Buch gerne später nochmal lesen, um evtl. noch andere Dinge zu entdecken. Delphine de Vigan konnte mich wiedermal überzeugen. Ich möchte sehr gerne alles von ihr lesen.....so nach und nach..... 😀 Ein wahnsinnig tolles Buch!!!!!! Und 1000 mal besser als " Verity " ..... 😉 ..... Aber vermutlich auch eine andere Zielgruppe ansprechend. Und das ist einfach nur faktisch herausgestellt.
Leseempfehlung !!!!!
Profile Image for João Carlos.
646 reviews271 followers
May 13, 2017

O Começo

“ALGUNS MESES APÓS A PUBLICAÇÃO DO MEU ÚLTIMO romance, deixei de escrever. Durante quase três anos não escrevi uma linha.”

Quem escreve estas linhas?

A Delphine ou a Delphine de Vigan?

Qual delas decide escrever ou deixar de escrever?

Nem uma linha, nem uma palavra. Só de olhar para um bloco, para um caderno ficava com náuseas. Pouco a pouco, o gesto em si torna-se ocasional, hesitante, usar uma caneta era cada vez mais difícil, mal abria um documento word no computador entrava em pânico…

Será uma doença ou uma falta de inspiração momentânea?

O olhar fixo no computador a tremura nas mãos…

“Escrever, não podia mais.
Escrever era não.”

O silêncio, os boatos, a falta de tempo…

“A escrita que, durante tanto tempo me ocupara, que tão profundamente transformara a minha existência e que me era preciosa, passara a aterrorizar-me.”


Será a SEDUÇÃO o Ato ou Efeito de Seduzir, de induzir ao mal ou a erro por meio de artifícios, de desencaminhar ou desonrar valendo-se de encantos e promessas…



Diria que entrou de uma forma Profunda, Lenta, Segura, Insidiosa na minha VIDA, como num palco de teatro, a meio da representação, como se fosse possível, a meio da peça alterar o enredo.

Será que é possível?

“Daquela forma podia ouvir, falar, compreender o que estava a ser tecido no lugar do livro, aquele vai e vem entre o leitor e o texto, o livro remetendo quase sempre o leitor – por motivos que não consigo explicar – para a sua própria história. O livro era uma espécie de espelho, cujos contornos e profundidade de campo já não me pertenciam.”

Mas afinal quem escreve estas linhas?

A Delphine ou a Delphine de Vigan ou a L.?

E de que maneira o Sucesso ou o Insucesso afectam o escritor?

“Para mim, o sucesso de um livro tratava-se de um mero acidente. No verdadeiro sentido do termo. Um acontecimento brutal e inesperado provocado por uma coincidência aleatória de diferentes fatores não reproduzíveis.”


“- As pessoas estão-se nas tintas. Já têm a sua dose de fábulas e personagens, estão saturadas de peripécias, de imprevistos. As pessoas estão fartas de intrigas bem oleadas, dos seus habilidosos começos, e dos seus desenlaces. As pessoas estão fartas dos vendedores de banha da cobra, que multiplicam as histórias como pãezinhos para vender-lhes livros, carros e iogurtes. Histórias produzidas em série e infinitamente declináveis. Os leitores, podes ter a certeza, esperam mais da literatura e têm toda a razão: esperam o Verdadeiro, o autêntico, querem que lhes contem a vida, estás a perceber? A literatura não pode enganar-se de terreno.
Refleti alguns instantes antes de responder-lhe.
- É assim tão importante que a vida que se conta nos livro seja verdadeira ou falsa?
- Sim, é importante. É importante que sejam verdadeiros?”

Quem CONCORDA com este excerto?

Quem DISCORDA deste excerto?



E afinal qual é o Mistério da Escrita?

Soa bem ou não soa…

“Julgo que as pessoas sabem que aquilo que escrevemos nunca nos é totalmente estranho. Sabem que há sempre um fio, um motivo, uma falha, que nos liga ao texto. Mas aceitam que substituamos, que condensemos, que desviemos, que alteremos. E que inventemos.”


Será a DEPRESSÃO apenas o Abatimento; o Enfraquecimento Físico ou Moral; o Desânimo; o Esgotamento…

O que é que provoca a DEPRESSÃO numa Pessoa que é um Escritor?
- Estar bloqueado porque se recusa a escrever o que deve escrever…
- Ter medo de…
- Estar em pânico porque não consegue escrever…
- Não ter confiança em si mesmo…
- Ter horror ao VAZIO…
- ...

L. entra na vida de Delphine ou na vida de Delphine de Vigan?

Reconstituídos os factos, começa a ter a consciência de que revelam uma espécie de trama, a tinta invisível, cujos contornos deixam entrever a progressão lenta e obstinada de L….

L. é o Anjo da Vida ou o Anjo da Morte?
É uma criatura espiritual que nos brinda com o Bem ou com o Mal?
Que nos encaminha para a felicidade e para o bem-estar existencial…


“Qualquer um que tenha vivido o controlo mental, essa prisão invisível cujas regras são incompreensíveis, qualquer um que tenha vivido esse sentimento de já não conseguir pensar por si mesmo, esse ultrassom que apenas nós ouvimos e que interfere com todos os pensamentos, todas as sensações, que afeta tudo. Qualquer um que tenha tido medo de poder enlouquecer, ou de já o estar, certamente entenderá o meu silêncio (…).
Era demasiado tarde.”


A será a Traição apenas a Ação de trair alguém?

Deve o Escritor enganar o Leitor?
Pode o Leitor ser completamente enganado por um livro que se deixasse ler como verdade e que não fosse senão uma invenção, um disfarce, pura imaginação. “Multiplicar os efeitos do real para fazer com que acreditem que aquilo que está a acontecer aconteceu. E lanço o desafio – a vós, a mim, seja a quem for – de distinguir o verdadeiro do falso. Aliás, podia ser um projeto literário, escrever um livro inteiro para ser lido como uma história verdadeira, um livro pretensamente baseado em factos reais, mas onde tudo, fosse inventado.”


(Concluindo: Quem é que escreveu "A Partir de Uma História Verdadeira"?

A Delphine ou a Delphine de Vigan ou a L....?

O livro é MAU mas Altamente Recomendável...


Frédéric Taddeï, Delphine de Vigan, Roman Polanski e Olivier Assayas - Livre Paris 2017

Roman Polanski vai adaptar ao cinema o livro de Delphine de Vigan
Profile Image for Liz Barnsley.
3,405 reviews989 followers
April 17, 2017
Based on a true story really wasn't for me. But I should make it clear that in this case it is most definitely the story rather than the writing quality that was my issue. I actually rather loved the way Delphine De Vigan writes so I'll hopefully read some more from her in the future.

This is about this book though.

Problem being this has been done before and honestly? In my opinion better. The mysterious meeting of two minds, an ongoing friendship developing that becomes toxic or perhaps mutually destructive, with an ambiguous open ended maybe whatever finale that supposedly leaves the reader in a whirl but honestly, left me slightly flat. The lilting beautiful prose is what held me in the novel not the telling of the tale.

And seriously I'm sorry but you know there probably are people out there in the world who have not yet seen the intensely brilliant "The Usual Suspects" but have always intended to do so, who may decide to read this novel. The author lays out the ending of The Usual Suspects in full, including the final scenes in that movie (which DID leave me in a whirl and is cleverly, insanely excellent) thereby giving away all its secrets and even some of the nuances. Why???? Why would you DO that. It irritated me beyond all reason - LUCKILY I have seen that movie, no spoiler for me. I believe it was to make comparisons to how the character in "Based on a True Story" was feeling but you know sorry this was no Usual Suspects and this character is no Kayser Soze. No. Just no.

2* for the beautiful writing but you can keep the rest.

Profile Image for Booklunatic.
1,018 reviews
September 3, 2016
"Vielleicht ist eine Begegnung, ob nun eine amouröse oder freundschaftliche, genau das, zwei Funken Wahnsinn, die sich erkennen und gefangen nehmen."

5 Sterne

Und hier ist es also, mein bisheriges Highlight der belletristischen Herbst-Neuerscheinungen! Delphine de Vigan begeistert und überrascht mich doch immer wieder aufs Neue.

Zur Handlung will ich eigentlich gar nicht so viel sagen. Sollte man auch nicht, denke ich. Der Klappentext reicht vollkommen als Vorabinfo, den Rest muss man selbst lesen. Und sich hineinziehen lassen in dieses Spiel von Literatur und Fiktion, von Freundschaft und Argwohn, von Wahrheit und Wahn.

Raffiniert, intensiv, auf vielfältige Weise spannend. Ich lese selten Bücher zweimal, aber ich glaube, hier könnte es sich glatt lohnen - nicht zuletzt, um die vielen doppelbödigen Botschaft auszukundschaften, die die Autorin eingebaut hat und die man nach Beendigung des Buchs nochmal in einem ganz neuen Licht betrachten mag.
Profile Image for Maria.
78 reviews73 followers
October 26, 2018
This slow burning thriller completely mesmerized me, and although it was surprisingly action-free, I still couldn't put it down (I still think it qualifies as a thriller because of the atmosphere).

The main character has the same name as the author. Delphine-in-the-book is also an author, and when the story starts, she is thinking back on a difficult time in her life, trying to figure out excactly what happened. I all started after the publication of her latest novel, which was semi-autobiographical and created a bit of a stir. I don't know if the real Delphine de Vigan did the same, or what other similarities there are between author and narrator, but there might be quite a few.

I'ts an introspective, slow moving story, and the language is very comfortable to read (I want to say "it just melts in your mouth"), and it reminded me a bit of Ishiguro. When you have a narrator looking back on events from the past in this way, it often creates a sort of distance to the plot that can lower the stakes and kill the tension. That distance is really not a problem here, though. Instead, the narration creates a sort of slow buildup of tension that just makes you want to keep reading. Over time, small events accumulate into a situation it will be very hard for Delphine to get out of. Kind of like a trap closing around you and you don't notice until it's too late. There are so many little signs of something being off, signs that individually can be explained away, but if you manage to put them together, the story they reveal is dark and scary.

As you may have understood, this book is very meta. It toys with the reader, making us ask ourselves what is real and what isn't, and wonder who is actually telling the story. When we start out, Delphine is returning from a book signing, and although she is exchausted, she goes to a party, where she meets the mysterious anc charismatic L. They soon become friends, and L. gradually becomes more and more involved in Delphine's life. She also has very strong ideas about what kind of book Delphine should write next, and about literature in general. She protests wildly against Delphine's own ideas, and insists that fiction is dead, Delphine must write something true.

Delphine’s and L.s discussions about truth vs. fiction in literature was very interesting to read. My first reaction to L.s blind belief in telling "true stories" was that "true stories" often has an element of gossip or of wanting to peek into someone else’s private life. I find this in poor taste, and also often not that interesting or relevant. I think fictional stories can also tell important truths. I would find a story from World War II, with made up characters, which depicts the gruesomeness of the war accurately, to be more important, interesting and true than the autobiography of a celebrity.
But it is clear from the outset that this book plays with the popularity of books that are autobiographical or based on a true story. For example, the title of the book is Based On A True Story, but on the back of the book, above the description and blurbs, it says, in black, capitalized letters: DO NOT TRUST THIS BOOK. L. herself is a ghostwriter, believing herself to write "the truth" about her clients, something I find highly questionable. The ending of the book (no spoilers here) also plays heavily on the fact that we often cannot know the truth, least of all about our own lives.

The thing about L. is that it often seems like she steps over some line, but then when Delphine ask her about it, she always has a perfectly reasonable explanation for it. You can't catch her read handed doing anything wrong. But the way she slowly and steadily gaines more and more control over Delphine's life was spine-chilling. Her insistence on Delphine writing something "true" and her disdain for anything Delphine herself would like to write, eventually makes her completely incapable of writing anything at all:

Writing was becoming a battle. Not only writing a book (which was to be honest no longer an issue), but any writing at all: replying to friends, to requests passed on by my publisher, putting words together to construct sentences, however humdrum. I hesitated over expressions, doubted my grammar, tried unsuccessfully to find the right tone. Writing had become a trial of strength and I wasn't up to it. And always in front of the screen there was this burning in my throat preventing me breathing.

L. slowly but steadily breaks Delphine down. Delphine herself describes it like this:

Sometimes the rather hackneyed image that comes to mind is that of a spider that has patiently spun its web, or an octopus with many tentacles, holding me prisoner. But it wasn’t like that. L. was more like a jellyfish, light and translucent, who settled on part of my soul. That contact left a burn, but it wasn’t visible to the naked eye. Its imprint left me seemingly free in my movements. But it bound her to me much more than I could have imagined.

I loved the combination of the meta-element exploring whether truth is even possible to attain trough literature, and the creepy thriller elements. It was a mesmerizing combination. The slow buildup of tension was extremely well done, and L.s influence over Delphine is, as one of the blurbs describes it "A masterclass in manipulation".
Profile Image for Myriam St-Denis Lisée.
521 reviews52 followers
November 27, 2015
Ce livre m'a profondément marquée, obsédée complètement pendant la lecture, fait rager, sourire, m'a émue, bref, je découvre cette auteure et j'ai hâte de me lancer dans ses prochains ouvrages.
Et comme elle a une plume magnifique pour nommer certaines choses essentielles, je recopie ici trois de mes extraits préférés. Pour ne pas les oublier :-)

"Rares sont les amis dont nous pouvons nous dire qu'ils ont changé notre vie, avec cette certitude étrange que, sans eux, notre vie tout simplement n'aurait pas été la même, avec l'intime conviction que l'incidence de ce lien, son influence, ne se limite pas à quelques dîners, soirées ou vacances, mais que ce lien a irradié, rayonné, bien au-delà, qu'il a agi sur les choix les plus importants que nous avons faits, qu'il a profondément modifié notre manière d'être et contribué à affirmer notre mode de vie".

"J'ai tenté d'expliquer cette idée à laquelle je revenais sans cesse, selon laquelle, quoique l'on écrive, on était dans la fiction : - Même si cela a eu lieu, même si quelque chose s'est passé qui ressemble à cela, même si les faits sont avérés, c'est toujours une histoire qu'on se raconte. On se la raconte. Et au fond, l'important, c'est peut-être ça. Ces toutes petites choses qui ne collent pas à la réalité, qui la transforment. Ces endroits où le papier calque se détache, sur les bords, dans les coins. Parce qu'on a beau faire, ça gondole, ça frise, ça frouille. Et c'est peut-être pour ça que le livre vous a touchés. Nous sommes tous des voyeurs, je vous l'accorde, mais au fond ce qui nous intéresse, nous fascine, ce n'est peut-être pas tant la réalité que la manière dont elle est transformée par ceux qui essayent de nous la montrer ou nous la raconter. C'est le filtre posé sur l'objectif. En tout cas, que le roman soit certifié par le réel ne le rend pas meilleur. Voilà ce que je crois".

"Le soir, quand je me suis couchée, j'ai repensé à cette expression de "pure fiction" que l'homme avait utilisée et qu'il m'était arrivé d'employer aussi. En quoi la fiction était-elle pure? De quoi était-elle soi-disant exempte? N'y avait-il pas toujours, dans la fiction, une part de nous-mêmes, de notre mémoire, de notre intimité? On parlait de "pure" fiction, jamais de "pure" autobiographie. On n'était donc pas complètement dupe. Mais après tout, peut-être que ni l'une ni l'autre n'existaient".
Profile Image for Lucinda Garza.
159 reviews656 followers
September 14, 2020
Qué manera de reflexionar sobre la autoficción a través de la misma autoficción + THRILLER PSICOLÓGICO.

Una joya.
Profile Image for Nicko D.
261 reviews82 followers
November 3, 2017
Идва момент, в който всеки автор, писал за себе си или за семейството си, несъмнено е бил изкушен да пише и за след това: да разкаже за раните, за горчивината, за обвиненията в оклеветяване, за развалените отношения с фамилията. В новата си книга „По действителен случай” Делфин дьо Виган се потапя именно в тези дебри – да разкаже за последствията от успешния си роман „Силна е нощта”, в който тя описа трагичната смърт на майка си Лусил. Книгите на Делфин дьо Виган са част от каталога на издателство „Колибри”, в превод на Росица Ташева.

Крилатата фраза, че няма по-добър сценарист от живота тласка все повече читатели да търсят романи с етикета „по действителен случай”. Голяма част от хората вече не очакват да им се разказват истории за приспиване или за утешение. Не ги е грижа за взаимозаменяемите персонажи, пренасяни от една книга в друга, не ги е грижа за ловко изплетените повече или по-малко правдоподобни ситуации, за които са чели вече двайсет и пет пъти. Пет пари не дават за всичко това. Читателите търсят реалното, преживяното, истината, възможността да се отъждествят с героите, сюжетът, опериран от фикция. Истинският живот! И „По действителен случай” им го предлага. Още със заглавието си. Романът е логичното и смислово продължението на „Силна е нощта”, в който психично нестабилната й майка слага край на живота.

Ти продаде майка си и това ти донесе много пари, нали?

Носи ли обаче успехът щастие? Делфин потъва в дълбока депресия, преследват я вътрешни страхове, изолира се от целия свят, отказва да пише, бива обсебена от тайнствена приятелка, неин роднина й изпраща заплашителни писма, размиват й се действителност и фикция, докато един ден фермер не я намира полугола в крайпътната канавка, натровена с отрова за мишки.

Делфин дьо Виган си играе изключително умело с читателското въображение, лъкатушейки го между фикция и реалност. Прозата й е толкова изчистена и убедителна, че в края на романа читателят има нужда да прочете думата „КРАЙ”, за да се отърси от това особено въздействие на прозата й и да се върне обратно в живота. Но Делфин вече му е поставила един основен въпрос за размисъл: по действителен случай ли е книгата й или точно това е смисълът на литературата?! Да те излъже за няколко часа, пренасяйки те другаде, превръщайки те в един корабокрушенец в непознати земи.

Романът на Виган е пропит с философията, че бъдещето принадлежи на чувствителните хора. След няколкомесечно лутане и тежка депресия авторката достига до заключението, че истинските творчески пориви са предшествани от тъмна нощ. В самотата на своя бит французойката осъзнава, че особено в трудните моменти малко хора са способни да ни потърсят там, където всъщност наистина се намираме.

Делфин дьо Виган, родена през 1966 година, е френска писателка, авторка на шест романа: „Дни без глад”, „Хубавите момчета”, „Една декемврийска вечер”, „Но и аз”, „Подземни часове” и „Силна е нощта”, удостоени общо със седем литературни награди. Майка на две деца, спътница на известен френски литературен критик и журналист, след като упражнява различни професии, от 2007 година насам Делфин дьо Виган живее само от перото си.
Profile Image for Jeanette.
3,216 reviews550 followers
May 23, 2020
Well, I thought it had potential to hit a 5 star. Nope-not in the whole piece. It deserves a 4 star rating if you only took the first 2/3rds of the book and rated that alone. But I thought the ending just brought that down. When I was at the 40% mark I started to wonder why the ratings here were not much higher. This site usually holds on average many genre with huge over-ratings as a given. Especially this kind of book or best seller modern, double that factor. So why is this book NOT over-rated? Well, by the end I answered my own question, but you don't get the full "gist" until after the 1/2 way point.

This is a hard book to review without giving any spoilers. I won't. It's fully 3.5 stars if there were 1/2 stars in the mix of rating here.

Read the trailer again. Notice how it is depicted as FRENCH best seller and FICTION book category.

Well, most people will either love this book or drop it. It's very pole seated for "eyes". Is it horror? Is it semi-memoir? Well, except for one Stephen King of many years ago- (decades) I don't think I've read a comparable set of "eyes". I have in psychological non-fiction. Quite often.

The first half you will be entrenched immediately and be aware of L. from the get-go. It's not like you need to be any inspector yourself to decipher the core of manipulation from the very introductory pages.

It's also quite French too in an exquisite style and movement sense. Also in the Metro, cafe, or in an acknowledgment or not posturing quotient. (Think NYC people in 100's density never looking each other in the eyes anywhere; this for what I'm insinuating- although Paris brand is rather different still). Paris has more fashion signals and signs advertising attached to it. But that aspect of the book, I LOVED. Delphine cored it in the "woman looking/ observation" discussions too.

Well, go at it. I do totally understand how it became such a best seller. But be warned also- that about 1/3rd of the copy is about writers writing about their writing. NOT a category of fiction or non-fiction I tend to admire. But here it was vast but doable.

There were certain paragraphs, phrases I would have listed here if it had been a print copy. But I'm too lazy to do searches for them now. One was about crazy meeting crazy. It made me think of that New Zealand/ Australian "Folie a deux" history of the two girls- one of which is now a famous international author. No more clues.

The ending, for me, was a disappointment. Having had multiple teenagers or college prone at one time- I wondered continually the "control" of never having them home when there was crossover with other characters. It was the right length, but the ending should have been more defined- especially with Francois.

Don't blame me if you do not like it at all. Or if you love it more either. A strong psychological study regardless of what genre you really might place it in yourself. DIFFERENT than the norm presently, IMHO.
Profile Image for Teresa.
1,492 reviews
June 29, 2016
“Thriller diabolicamente perverso.
Vertiginoso mise em abyme psicanalítico.”
Le Point

Quem resiste a ler um livro assim definido?
Pois não sei o que me aconteceu que não vi nada onde encaixar tal definição.
Talvez ler a Delphine depois do Proust, em simultâneo com o Eça, procurando semelhanças com a Rendell, seja condená-la a uma “morte certa”…

Da minha leitura(vertiginosa para me libertar rapidamente do enfado) parece-me um pastiche, “colado com cuspo”, de outras obras literárias.
Por agora, dou-lhe duas estrelas; depois de ler A Ilha de Sukkwan e se, como receio, Delphine de Vigan me “estragou” a leitura com um violento spoiler, corrijo para uma…
Profile Image for Alex.
476 reviews104 followers
April 13, 2018
Update - 5 stars. I wrote a few thoughts in our reading group, and commenting there I realised that actually this book deserves the whole 5 stars.

This book is very intelligently written. De Vigan creates a very good atmosphere, you cannot put the book down.
I won‘t write more because everything could be a spoiler. I have a lot of unanswered questions...maybe there will be a sequel??
One star taken because the way the story slowly and claustrophobically develops, i would have wanted a grand finale, more dramatism. But i dont think that was the scope of this book. This is a very intelligently constructed sort of thriller which actually puts into disscusion the condition of the writer, of the reader, relationship between reader and writer - what does the reader wants to read / to think he read. How much is the writer willing to share his soul. Somehow this book remainded me of Italo Calvino‘s book „if on a winternight a traveller“ - this title was also in Delphine‘s bookcase.
Ok, 4,5 ! It is worth reading it, that is for sure

Profile Image for Viera Némethová.
255 reviews44 followers
January 3, 2023
Olga Tokarzcuk vo svojej knihe Vnímavý čitateľ píše, že čitateľ, ktorý bude s radosťou čítať vyfabulované príbehy sa narodil pred pár rokmi.
Budúcnosť literatúry bude vraj iba v opise skutočných príbehov. ľudia budú mať v obľube iba hmatateľné, skutočné, dohľadateľné príbehy. Tým pádom sa autori a autorky kníh zmenia na umeleckých opisovačov príbehov na ktoré si môžme siahnuť, ktoré sa udiali, ktoré sú skutočné. Preto už nebude potrebné písať na obálky kníh vetu, ktorú nemám veľmi rada, ale ktorá predáva knihu ako produkt oveľa lepšie- " podľa skutočného príbehu".

Delphine de Vigan s čitateľom rozohrá príbeh, ktorý je akoby jej vlastným. Opisuje ho do fascinujúcich detailov. Do jej života vstúpila očarujúca žena, ktorá sa stala jej dôvernou priateľkou. prichádza, odchádza, náhle sa zjavuje pri dverách, za rohom... S Delphine sa stretáva vždy sama, bez svedkov, rodiny, iných priateľov či známych. Kto je tajomná L.? Existuje vôbec?

Brilantný román francúzskej autorky má niekoľko vrstiev, v ktorých otvára niekoľko zásadných otázok a pohľadov. Vyrovnávanie sa s kritikou a zlými komentármi po napísaní knihy o vlastnej matke. Kríza tvorivého písania. Toxicita mnohých rádoby priateľských vzťahov, ktoré človeka ubíjajú a kradnú mu jeho slobodu a identitu, vnucujú mu svoje pohľady a názory. Fascináciu čitateľov skutočnými príbehmi, súkromím obľúbených autorov, voyagerizmom. Prečo nás tak fascinuje súkromie ľudí, ktorých si prisvojujeme z televíznych obrazoviek, zo stránok kníh, z rádia, internetu? Prečo začíname rezignovať na autorskú invenciu, fabuláciu, umeleckosť, nevypovedané, naznačené, intertextuálne ?

Fascinujúci román. lepšie som knižný rok 2023 ani začať nemohla.
Profile Image for Yves Gounin.
441 reviews44 followers
April 9, 2016
Comment écrit-on après un best-seller ?
Delphine de Vigan avait connu un immense succès en 2011 avec "Rien ne s'oppose à la nuit", un roman largement autobiographique qui m'avait enthousiasmé et enthousiasmé avec moi des milliers voire des millions de lecteurs.
On imagine aisément qu'un tel succès inhibe. Comment écrire un nouveau livre sans qu'il soit fatalement comparé au précédent ? Comment ne pas décevoir un lectorat impatient ? Nombreux furent les écrivains qui ne réussirent pas à relever ce défi : Harper Lee, Salinger...
Delphine de Vigan le relève avec un sacré culot.
En nous racontant, à la première personne, les mois qui ont suivi. Le succès aussi inattendu qu'écrasant. L'angoisse de la page blanche. Et la rencontre de L., une inconnue qui devient une amie, une confidente, un double.
Dès le départ, l'auteure nous alerte, au risque de tuer le suspense : l'amitié de L. est suspecte, dangereuse, toxique. Le roman devient celui de la chronique annoncée d'une insidieuse opération d'asservissement amical.

Mais - c'est ce qui fait sa richesse - "D'après une histoire vraie" est bien plus que cela. En nous racontant ses échanges avec L., Delphine de Vigan nous livre ses réflexions sur l'art du roman. L. l'exhorte à creuser la veine de "Rien ne s'oppose..." en écrivant un nouveau pan de son autobiographie. C'est ce qu son public attend qui, de nos jours, ne jure plus que par les égo-romans et les récits inspirés "d'une histoire vraie". Mais Delphine renâcle : le roman, dit-elle, n'est pas le miroir du réel et, s'il s'en inspire, c'est pour le tirer vers la fiction.

L'exposition de ces théories - au demeurant stimumantes - serait terriblement aride si elle n'était pas entrelacée dans un récit. Milan Kundera l'avait montré dans "L'insoutenable légèreté de l'être" avant de l'oublier dans ses derniers livres d'un dictatisme pontifiant.

L'habileté de Delphine de Vigan - les moins indulgents parleront de rouerie - consiste à jeter progressivement le doute dans l'esprit du lecteur. Ce récit est-il, comme tout le laissait penser dans les premières pages, inspiré d'une histoire vraie ? Ou bien est-il né dans l'esprit fécond de son auteur ? Une troisième hypothèse, proprement époustouflante, est envisagée dans les toutes dernières pages du roman. Jusqu'à un "point" final qui ne résoud rien mais éclaire tout.
Profile Image for Conejo Literario.
479 reviews210 followers
April 27, 2018
Pensé que me iba a encontrar con una novela dramática y que me topo con un TREMENDO thriller psicológico. Delphine de Vigan es la reina de la autoficción, nunca sabes que tanto es verdad o mentira en su discurso pero te enreda por completo la historia.
Si te gustó "Misery" de Stephen King,debes leer este libro AHORA.
Profile Image for Marcello S.
505 reviews209 followers
June 7, 2018
Un paio di mesi fa leggo a caso Niente si oppone alla notte. Mi era sembrato quasi splendido.
Decido di leggere altro di Delphine de Vigan e mi capita per le mani questo. Altra bomba.

È il seguito ideale di Niente si oppone alla notte. Si parte dalla fine del tour di presentazione del libro che le ha cambiato la vita e a cui sembra impossibile dare un seguito. L’incipit fa capire lo stato delle cose: Qualche mese dopo l’uscita del mio ultimo romanzo, ho smesso di scrivere. Per quasi tre anni non ho scritto una riga.

Ancora autofiction, quindi, anche se qui la questione è più complicata e non del tutto chiara.
Da una storia vera lo si può interpretare in vari modi: (1) come una specie di thriller (si citano, non a caso, due passi di Misery non deve morire in testa ad altrettanti capitoli), (2) come un resoconto di fatti abbastanza inquietanti accaduti a Delphine nel corso di un paio d’anni, (3) come un libro fantasma in cui de Vigan è solo una pedina e non più l’autrice.
Si gioca molto sulla realtà o meno dei fatti descritti. Sul confine tra fiction, autofiction, autobiografia. E se alla fine fosse tutta finzione, mi sentirei tradito? Lo troverei meno bello?
Difficile dire, non saprei.

Ha più senso se letto dopo il predecessore; non ne viene ripreso il contenuto ma a volte vi si fa riferimento.
A tratti, anche qui, ti lascia senza parole, senza fiato.
Per me gran libro, e Delphine mia nuova eroina letteraria. [76/100]

Come fanno le persone a scrivere, amare, addormentarsi di colpo, variare il menu dei loro figli, crescerli, lasciarli andare via di casa senza aggrapparvisi, andare dal dentista una volta l’anno, fare sport, non tradire il proprio partner, non ricominciare a fumare, leggere libri + fumetti + riviste + un quotidiano, aggiornarsi sulle novità musicali, imparare a respirare, non esporsi al sole senza protezione, fare la spesa una sola volta a settimana senza dimenticare nulla?

Terminata la lezione, il professore di lettere le chiede di restare. Quando i compagni di classe escono, le chiede se va tutto bene. Se ha problemi in casa. Non vuole essere invadente, solo sapere se sta bene.
Il professore è in piedi di fronte a lei, la scruta. Cerca un indizio. L. abbassa lo sguardo.
Le dice che se non riesce a parlare, forse dovrebbe scrivere. Dovrebbe farlo per se stessa. In fondo, scrivere le piace. L. non risponde. Pensa intensamente alle parole che non riesce a pronunciare, ci pensa il più intensamente possibile perché l’uomo possa sentirle. Sono davvero così brutta, così ridicola, così diversa, così ingobbita, così spettinata, così cattiva? Ho paura di impazzire. Ho paura e non so se questa paura esista, se abbia un nome.
Profile Image for Hendrik.
407 reviews74 followers
June 14, 2018
Nach einer wahren Geschichte – Wieviel Wahrheit steckt tatsächlich in der Geschichte, die Delphine de Vigan ihren Lesern erzählt? Geht es nach dem Buchtitel, so wäre die Authentizität der Geschichte bereits von vornherein verbürgt. Aber reicht allein die Ankündigung aus, uns glauben zu machen, dass die Autorin eine wahre Begebenheit aus ihrem Leben erzählt? Kann ein Roman überhaupt Realität wiedergeben oder ist jedes Erzählen zwangsläufig reine Fiktion? In ein ganzes Netz solcher Fragen verwickelt Delphine de Vigan ihre Leser. Am Ende verliert man völlig den sicher geglaubten Boden unter den Füßen, ohne der entscheidenden Antwort auf die Frage nach der Wahrheit näher gekommen zu sein.

Es ist ein geschicktes Spiel auf mehreren Eben, das die Autorin hier mit ihrem Publikum spielt. Sie macht sich dabei zur Figur in ihrer eigenen Geschichte, eine Bestsellerautorin die einen überraschenden Erfolg mit einem autobiografischen Roman über ihre Mutter gefeiert hat (siehe: Das Lächeln meiner Mutter). Diese Parallele zur realen Delphine kann noch als gesichert gelten. Was soll man aber von der Begegnung mit der mysteriösen eleganten Fremden halten, die sich unmerklich in ihr Leben einschleicht? Klar! Ein unheimliches Element, das für die nötige Spannung in der Geschichte sorgen soll. Gut gemacht, aber eindeutig Fiktion. Wie verhält es sich aber mit den Erlebnissen aus dem Leben von Delphine, von denen sie immer wieder erzählt? Ihre beiden Kinder Louise und Paul? Ihr Freund François? Sind das tatsächliche Erinnerungen aus dem Leben der Autorin Delphine de Vigan oder glaubhafte Erfindungen, effets de réel – Realitätseffekte, welche die enge Beziehung zwischen Text und Wahrheit unterstreichen sollen?

Der Roman nutzt die voyeuristische Neigung seiner Leser, zwischen den Zeilen etwas aus dem Leben seiner Verfasserin zu erfahren, zu seinem Vorteil aus. In Frankreich dürfte dieser Effekt noch weitaus besser funktionieren, da dort Delphine de Vigan als Person in der breiten Öffentlichkeit ungleich bekannter ist, als das in Deutschland oder anderen Ländern der Fall ist. Doch auch ohne dieses Hintergrundwissen, kann man dieser intelligenten und unterhaltsamen Auseinandersetzung mit der Frage, wo die Grenze zwischen Realität und Fiktion verläuft, viel abgewinnen. (Übrigens wurde das Buch unter gleichem Titel kürzlich verfilmt, mit der wunderbaren Emmanuelle Seigner in der Hauptrolle. Die auch noch toll singt, wovon man sich hier überzeugen kann: Ultra Orange & Emmanuelle – Sing sing)
Profile Image for Célia | Estante de Livros.
1,143 reviews229 followers
July 20, 2016
Ainda que já tivesse um título publicado por cá (Nô e Eu | Guerra e Paz, 2015), Delphine de Vigan era para mim uma desconhecida. A verdade é que a autora francesa, que começou a sua carreira escrevendo sob pseudónimo em 2001, venceu com A Partir de uma História Verdadeira um dos mais importantes prémios franceses da literatura, o Renaudot.

A personagem principal deste romance chama-se, tal como a autora, Delphine, e vive, como aquela viveu, um grande sucesso após a publicação de um livro com grande carácter autobiográfico, envolvendo membros da sua família. Enquanto se afadiga com a promoção do seu livro, conhece L., uma mulher magnetizante que se insinua aos poucos na sua vida e que acaba por assumir nela um papel central. Delphine começa lentamente a experienciar o famoso bloqueio de escritor quando a ideia embrionária que tem para o próximo romance esbarra nas convicções de L., que a questiona sobre o que valerá a ficção perante a possibilidade do real e palpável.

Boa parte do livro, narrado na primeira pessoa por Delphine, é uma ode ao fascínio que sente por L. e à forma como se torna dependente dela, da sua atenção e presença. Mas o leitor avança na história sempre avisado pela narradora acerca do final pouco feliz que esta relação terá.

A Partir de uma História Verdadeira traz consigo muitas e variadas questões relacionadas com os livros e os escritores: qual é o limite entre a realidade e a ficção? Será uma mais válida que a outra? Como poderá um escritor lidar com um grande sucesso? Escreve para si ou para os seus leitores? Estes temas são abordados por Delphine de Vigan de uma forma quase autobiográfica, valendo-se da sua experiência pessoal e aproveitando para refletir e pôr os seus leitores a refletir. Mas não se pense que se trata aqui de um exercício literário a roçar o ensaio, porque a componente de thriller psicológico aqui presente é desenvolvido de forma brilhante e cativante, criando no leitor a vontade de descobrir a verdade sobre estas duas personagens.

Foi uma leitura completamente absorvente, que me encheu as medidas a todos os níveis: bem escrito, com um enredo cativante, personagens bem desenvolvidas e reflexões que ficam com o leitor. Será sem dúvida um dos melhores do meu 2016.

E o final do livro? Bem, penso que caberá ao leitor juntar as peças e tirar as suas próprias conclusões. Eu confirmei as minhas suspeitas com a última palavra do livro: Fim*
Profile Image for Guillaume Tribulations d'une vie.
128 reviews14 followers
September 21, 2015

Je pensais que l'auteure ne pourrait produire meilleur roman que Rien ne s'oppose à la nuit. Je me trompais grandement. La preuve est ici.

Cette année Delphine de Vigan nous propose un roman qui jongle entre autobiographie et fiction. Le lecteur garde le doute, subtilement entretenu par l'auteure, jusqu'à la dernière phrase.

D'ailleurs, l'autobiographie, le "Vrai" est un sujet récurrent du roman. La fiction est-elle toujours d'actualité dans la littérature ? Passionne-t'elle encore le lectorat ? Ou ce dernier ne s’intéresse-t-il plus qu'à la réalité exposée sous ses yeux ?

Mais "D'après une histoire vraie" c'est avant tout un exceptionnel roman psychologique. La pression est présente dès le début, sous la narration de Delphine, auteure au premier succès, qui fait la rencontre de L., nègre biographique, qui va changer sa vie.
Dès le début nous savons que L. va avoir une terrible influence sur Delphine, le texte va nous en faire découvrir la teneur.

Plus les chapitres défilent, plus l'étau se ressert sur la cage thoracique du lecteur. L'angoisse de Delphine devient nôtre. Le suspense est à son comble. Rien à y faire: impossible de faire une pause dans cette lecture.

L'annonce de la fin du roman m'a surpris par sa brutalité. J'étais perdu alors qu'il ne me restait que 50 pages pour arriver au terme. Mais, alors que je pensais l'histoire close et la conclusion en route, un nouveau souffle sur l'intrigue, bonus qui a fait basculer mon avis sur un coup de coeur.

Delphine de Vigan se révèle vraiment avec "D'Après une histoire vraie". Elle maitrise plusieurs genres mais excelle pour le psychologique. Un roman qui fait certes beaucoup de bruit pour cette rentrée littéraire 2015, mais dont la publicité se justifie par un souffle nouveau apporté à la littérature française. Un roman qui ne laisse pas indifférent, une Vraie expérience de lecture. Haletant.
Profile Image for ReadAlongWithSue .
2,655 reviews170 followers
October 19, 2020

Twitter |
Goodreads |
Blog |
Instagram |

I just can’t do it.
I’ve tried hard to like this book. It’s not the authors fault I think it’s the translation.

In its own language it has high ratings. In other languages it seems not.

Reading it was hard going as it seems it’s being told quite flat. No pitch or pace to it. Sort of slow and a bit repetitive.

The amount of times she referred to “L” was jarring on my mind. Really impacted on me in a very negative way.

So I switched to audio.

For me it wasn’t much better. The narrators voice was making me fall asleep.

I’m so sorry to be negative but this story was good towards the second half but by that time I’d lost my investment in the story and the characters.
Profile Image for Ieva Andriuskeviciene.
213 reviews110 followers
June 28, 2020
It was absolutely random pick from my audio library and boy I was surprised in a good way!
Delphine is a writer who had a big success with her previous book now struggling to cope. Writers block and darkness falls on her when mysterious L. comes to her life. She helps with emails and everyday jobs and slowly takes over her life. Will she be able to write another successful novel? And who is L.?
Don’t get confused it is not a fast paced thriller. It’s written in a autobiographical manner and touches interesting creative subjects. Mental health, struggle with success, friendship. How far you are going to use your friends just in favour of a good book? And who is using who?
Is any true story is really true story or is it only the perception of the teller?
Totally intrigued by the author and going to read more of her books
Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,103 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.