Anna Gavalda

French writer

Anna Gavalda is a French writer who was born in a Parisian suburb in 1970. After completing a Master’s degree in modern literature, she worked as a florist, a French teacher and a veterinary assistant before turning her hand to writing.

In 1999, she was awarded the RTL-Lire prize for her short story collection I Wish Someone Were Waiting for Me Somewhere, which was originally published in French as Je voudrais que quelqu’un m’attende quelque part. Her first full-length novel, Someone I Loved, was published in French under the name Je l’aimais in 2003, and was adapted into a film directed by Zabou Breitman and starring Daniel Auteuil in 2009. Hunting and Gathering was published in French as Ensemble, c’est tout in 2004, and met with tremendous success. It was adapted into a film directed by Claude Berri in 2007.

Hunting and Gathering

A faithful portrait of contemporary life

Hunting and Gathering is set in an upper-class Parisian neighbourhood in the early 2000s. It tells the story of four people who appear to have nothing in common at first glance: Philibert, an aristocrat who is utterly unequipped to deal with modern life; Camille, a penniless young woman who is at her lowest ebb; Franck, a talented but uncouth chef; and Paulette, a grandmother approaching the end of her life. However, against all odds, this mismatched group of people are drawn together for the happiest period of their lives.

Gavalda’s novel revolves around the ways these four characters meet and help each other – often in spite of themselves – when faced with the various trials and tribulations of modern life, from shyness and stammering to overwork, familial responsibilities and even homelessness.