Sunday, July 15, 2007


Title: Perfume (Das Parfum)
Author: Patrick Süskind
Penguin, 1987 (1985)

In 18th century Paris a peculiar, unwanted child is born. Grenouille is almost void of any human feeling. He lives by his nose and smell is all that governs him and his choices. As a young man he finds that the smell of a ripe, innocent virgin is he only scent worth having and after training as an apprentice perfumer he tries to capture this essence of innocense by murdering young girls. This is a classic that tells us that if you hate, you can't love and is definitely worth reading. The olfactory aspect of living alone is quite interesting to ponder and Süskind certainly manages to convince me that this might be a sense I should pay more attention to.

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