by Jean-Jacques Pauvert
In this prize-winning memoir Sade’s Publisher,Jean-Jacques Pauvert recounts in vivid detail his meteoric rise to the top of the French book world. By the tender age of twenty, Pauvert successfully published the complete works of the Marquis de Sade, which led to a protracted legal struggle with the French authorities. A similar firestorm erupted three years later in 1954, after he published Histoire d’O, a daring work by a then anonymous author that again drew the ire of censorship advocates. He begins his career in 1942, working in the mailroom of the venerable publishing house run by Gaston Gallimard, rubbing elbows with the likes of Albert Camus and Raymond Queneau. The sixteen- year-old Pauvert soon broke into the rare books business as World War II and the Occupation rendered literature as an increasingly precious commodity. After being arrested and jailed for three months in Tours by the Nazis for his role as a courier in the Resistance, he returned to Paris and printed his first book, a slim essay by Sartre on Camus. a work by Gide soon followed. SADE’S PUBLISHER: A Memoir was first published as La Traversée du Livre by Viviane-Hamy in 2005. It was translated from the French by Lynn Jeffress.