“Amélie Nothomb’s twenty-fifth novel is among her very best.” —Télérama
Diane is raised by a mother so plagued by jealousy of her own daughter that she is incapable of showing affection to her. Despite this, Diane grows up to become a brilliant young woman who rejects societal expectations. She forges her own path, dismissing suitors and pursuing her dream of becoming a cardiologist. At university, she befriends the assistant professor Olivia. Intelligent and cold, Olivia’s ambition and need to feel superior to others drags Diane down to a dark place.
This is the story of Diane’s relationships with other women: her best friend, the sweet Élisabeth; her mentor, the selfish Olivia; her sister, the coddled Célia; and, of course, her mother, Marie. Nothomb balances light-hearted observations with crushing revelations, exposing the spectrum of female bonds. Strike Your Heart takes a philosophical look at jealousy, contempt, loss, betrayal, and above it all, the capacity for forgiveness.
With her trademark wit, brevity, and tightly wound plots, Nothomb, one of Europe’s most acclaimed and beloved authors, has crafted an insightful story about a modern heroine who will linger in the minds of readers long after the final page.
Amélie Nothomb was born in Japan to Belgian parents in 1967. She lives in Paris. Since her debut on the French literary scene a little more than a decade ago, she has published a novel a year, every year. Her edgy fiction, unconventional thinking, and public persona have combined to transform her into a worldwide literary sensation. She is the recipient of the French Academy’s 1999 Grand Prix for the Novel, the René-Fallet, Alain-Fournier, and Jean-Giono prizes.