Perfume: The Story of a Murderer
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Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

by Patrick Süskind
Release date: 1985
Type: other fiction
Genres: magical realism
Tags: translation, world fantasy award

Original title: Das Parfum: Die Geschichte eines Mörders (1985).

World Fantasy Award: Best Novel winner (1987).

A terrifying examination of what happens when one man's indulgence in his greatest passion – his sense of smell – leads to murder.

In the slums of eighteenth-century France, the infant Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with one sublime gift-an absolute sense of smell. As a boy, he lives to decipher the odors of Paris, and apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille's genius is such that he is not satisfied to stop there, and he becomes obsessed with capturing the smells of objects such as brass doorknobs and frest-cut wood. Then one day he catches a hint of a scent that will drive him on an ever-more-terrifying quest to create the "ultimate perfume" – the scent of a beautiful young virgin.

updated 2018-09-06

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