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The Académie Française’s Novel Grand Prize goes to Retour à Killybegs (Grasset)


Lagardère Publishing

Paris, October 27, 2011

On 27 October, Sorj Chalandon won the Académie Française’s Novel Grand Prize for Retour à Killybegs, published by Grasset.

Born in 1952, Chalandon spent many years as a journalist for Libération before joining Le Canard Enchaîné. His coverage of Northern Ireland and the Klaus Barbie trial earned him the Albert-London Prize in 1988. He has published Le Petit Bonzi (2005), Une promesse (2006, Médicis Prize), Mon Traître (2008) and La Légende de nos pères (2009), all with Grasset.

Retour à Killybegs

Now that everything has been uncovered, they will speak in my stead. The IRA, the British, my family and friends, journalists whom I have never even met. Some of them will dare to explain why and how I came to be a traitor. Books may even be written about me. It’s infuriating. Don’t listen to any of their claims. Trust none of my enemies, and above all none of my friends. Stay away from those who tell you they knew me. Nobody has been inside my skin, nobody. If I have chosen to speak today, it is because I am the only one who can tell the truth. Because I hope that only silence will follow me” –

Killybegs, 24 December 2006, Tyrone Meehan

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