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George Perec's dramatically original novel with its games and puzzles and extraordinary goings-on in a half-real, half-imaginary Paris, was the novel of the year in 1987.
Georges Perec (1936-82) won the Prix Renaudot in 1965 for his first novel Things- A Story of the Sixties, and went on to exercise his unrivalled mastery of language in almost every imaginable kind of writing, from the apparently trivial to the deeply personal. He composed acrostics, anagrams, autobiography, criticism, crosswords, descriptions of dreams, film scripts, heterograms, lipograms, memories, palindromes, plays, poetry, radio plays, recipes, riddles, stories short and long, travel notes, univocalics, and, of course, novels. Life- A User's Manual, which draws on many of Perec's other works, appeared in 1978 after nine years in the making and was acclaimed a masterpiece to put beside Joyce's Ulysses. It won the Prix Medicis and established Perec's international reputation.