Ir�ne N�mirovsky's own life was as dramatic as any fiction. Few writers enjoy posthumous success as astonishing as hers after the international triumph of Suite Fran�aise. She was born in 1903 in Kiev to a well-off Jewish family, but died in Auschwitz only 39 years later. With her parents she fled the Russian Revolution, eventually settling in France. With the publication of David Golder in 1929 - delivered to a publisher just before the birth of her first daughter - Ir�ne swiftly became an acclaimed and successful writer. When France fell to the Nazis, Ir�ne and her family took refuge in a small Burgundy village, where she finished two more novels and began Suite Fran�aise. Finally, in July 1942 Ir�ne was arrested by the French police and deported.
Her biographers take advantage of access to diaries, unpublished documents and surviving family to examine Ir�ne's remarkable life, from pogroms in Ukraine to gilded holidays in Biarritz, and her troubled relationship with her vain, difficult mother. The result is a brilliant portrait of an exceptional writer and of a turbulent period of European history.