Since its release on August 3, Timothy Schaffert’s “The Perfume Thief” has been riding a wave of continued success.
More recently, the novel was selected by Penguin Random House International for the One World One Book program. The publisher selects up to two titles per year for this global promotion.
As a result, “The Perfume Thief” will hit bookstores in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Austria, Barbados, Bermuda, Denmark, France, Germany, Guam, from Hong Kong, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Luxembourg. , Netherlands, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand and we Virgin Islands.
“The Perfume Thief,” which is Schaffert’s sixth novel, follows Clementine, a queer American expatriate and thief, who is pulled out of retirement and into another con when the Nazis invade Paris.
Schaffert, director of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s creative writing program and Rosowski Professor of English, appreciated the opportunities he had to interact with readers and looks forward to further engaging with an audience. international.
“It seems like this book has sparked a bit more discussion and conversation among readers than my other books,” Schaffert said. “When you write, you don’t necessarily think about the reader’s response or what the reader might think; you think about plot, characterization, and research.
“When you’re done and put the book out into the world, readers respond with new insights. It can be exciting to hear these new perspectives on material you’ve been working on, alone, for years. »
The inspiration for “The Perfume Thief” came from several ideas Schaffert had tossed around in his imagination, as well as an interest in the specific time period and location of Nazi-occupied Paris. An additional catalyst came from Virginia Woolf’s novel, “Orlando.”
To write the novel, Schaffert spent a lot of time researching the pre-war II and Paris occupied by the Nazis. He also drew on books and archival pages from Vogue magazine to bring the world of perfume and luxury to life.
“I learned so much,” Schaffert said. “The whole process was a learning experience. I had a certain idea of perfume and its history, but the smell, the spices, the flavor and the search for them – all of this had a profound role in culture and industry, and even in warfare. It was the same to understand the world war II Paris.
“One difficult thing about the plot of ‘The Perfume Thief’ was that I was weaving around military strategy and the architects of war, and so I had to think about the motivation, and the details of the tyranny of the occupation, and the psychology of conquest and defeat.”
In addition to being selected as a Penguin Random House One World, One Book title, “The Perfume Thief” also earned additional accolades, including:
made the American Booksellers Association bestseller list;
was a #1 bestseller on Amazon in the category of LGBTQ+ Historical fiction;
has been included in various “best of” lists, including projectors in the THE Times, Oprah Daily, CrimeReads, Publishers Weekly and the Toronto Star, and the audiobook has been recommended by Apple Books as a “Must Listen” selection; and
received support from perfume bloggers and was featured in a promotion by New York perfumer Ellis Brooklyn, who paired the book with perfumes from his collection.