Original title: L’Indésir

Publication Date:

August 2023



Original language and publisher

French | L’Iconoclaste

Territories Handled

Netherlands, North America, Scandinavia


  • Prix Stanislas du Salon du livre de Nancy (longlisted)
  • Prix Révélation d'automne 2023 de la SGDL (longlisted)
  • Prix des Écrivains chez Gonzague Saint Bris (winner)
  • Prix du Cheval blanc 2023 (longlisted)
  • Prix Les Inrockuptibles (longlisted)


Original title: L’Indésir


Debut author of 26 years old and has already developed a unique, inventive voice.

A novel about love and desire told through an original and modern prism.

L’Iconoclaste has a long tradition of success with its debut novels.


What happens if your estranged mother dies, but you don’t care?

It is 3 AM: Nuria has just returned from a night out at the club, and the boy she brought home is sleeping on the sofa. Her grandmother calls to tell her that her mother, who Nuria hasn’t seen in years, has committed suicide. But Nuria feels nothing. In the days following the funeral, this young woman will discover and uncover the life of her mother through the people who knew her. They disclose their secrets, they show their hearts and, little by little, Nuria senses she may be on the brink of a breakthrough. Alongside the boy who slept on her couch, who accompanies her on her adventures, she sees through the shell she has constructed between not only herself and the world, but herself and her feelings. With a beautiful and linguistically brave literary style, Joséphine Tassy explores this one woman’s lack of desire with dazzling images, great nuance, and a strong, liberated poetic voice.

This morning, I awoke with the feeling of yesterday. I looked at my abandoned laundry from the day before, there where I left it. I saw my skin-color silk robe, that fits to my body and I wear on nights I want to show it off. It rests in the corner on the carpet, wrinkled, no longer looking like anything. My bra lying in front of the chimney, the red that squashes my small, pointed breasts, and my black leather jacket that probably still smells like gin and tobacco, resting on the crooked chair. This morning, I woke up, and the bedroom that I know so well appeared strange to me, occupied by a day I forgotten. I woke up and everywhere before my eyes, I saw the day before the night. Yesterday, when I came home from the club, I took off my leather vest, my chocolate-colored dress, slipped my underwear from between my thighs, and threw off my bra with one hand. Then the phone rang.