23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Karine Tuil
© Jean Francois Paga

Karine Tuil

Karine Tuil was born in Paris in 1972. There she pursued legal studies at the Université Panthéon-Assas, specialising in media law as well as information science. Her dissertation addressed the issue of legal provisions for political campaigns, among other topics.In her debut novel »Pour le pire« (2000; tr: For worse) she dissects a relationship suddenly turned to hatred due to a licentious letter from an embittered doctor. This, together with her next two novels »Interdit« (2001; tr: Forbidden) and »Du sexe féminin« (2002; tr: Female), forms a trilogy of Jewish family history. »Quand j’étais drôle« (2005; tr: When I was funny) is a tragicomic account of a TV comedian who moves to the USA, while »Douce France« (2007; tr: Tender France) is an almost naturalistic depiction of the unfathomable bureaucracy behind asylum policy. Tuil’s wide-ranging novel »L’Invention de nos vies« (2013; tr: The invention of our lives), is already her ninth; it depicts a group of three former university friends and the lies which underpin their lives. Nina, already in a relationship with Samuel, embarks on an affair with Samir, destroying the trio’s mutual bond. The ambitious Samir is the only one of the three to achieve top marks in law, but when his job applications are rejected one after the other he believes that his banlieue background and Muslim faith are marking him out for discrimination. He decides to abbreviate his name to the more English-sounding »Sam« and also avails himself of Samuel’s biography. It is only twenty years later that Samuel and Nina, still together and living in a miserable satellite town outside Paris, learn of Samir’s ascent to a glittering legal career in New York. The trio’s forced reunion has dramatic consequences for their lives, built as they are on masquerade and denial. Nina enters into a relationship with Samir once again, but soon recognises the emptiness and aimlessness of the affair. Meanwhile Samir’s lies threaten to bring down both his career and his marriage and Samuel, consumed by jealousy and fed up with his career as a social worker, finally decides to turn his writing ambitions into reality. In footnotes, Tuil condenses the careers and ambitions of characters mentioned in passing. With impressively concise characterisation and subtle irony the love triangle forms part of a panorama of missed opportunities, turning points and unrealised dreams.Tuil’s work has received the Prix Wizo and a Stendhal Scholarship among other citations, as well as multiple nominations for the Prix Goncourt, the Prix Goncourt des Lycéens as well as the Prix Interallié and Prix de Flore. Among her other writings are the plays »Entre nous« and »La Quarantaine«, and she has also worked as a screenwriter and journalist. Her debut film is currently in production. Tuil lives in Paris.



Gustav KiepenheuerLeipzig, 2003[Ü: Ralf Pannowitsch]

Der Rabbi und die Braut

AufbauBerlin, 2005[Ü: Ralf Pannowitsch]

La Domination

Éditions GrassetParis, 2008

Six mois, six jours

Éditions GrassetParis, 2010

Die Gierigen

AufbauBerlin, 2014[Ü: Maja Ueberle-Pfaff]