English language hardcover edition
|Publisher||Grasset & Fasquelle|
Published in English
HHhH is the debut novel of French author Laurent Binet, published in 2010 by Grasset & Fasquelle. The book recounts Operation Anthropoid, the assassination of Nazi leader Reinhard Heydrich in Prague during World War II. The novel was awarded the 2010 Prix Goncourt du Premier Roman.
The novel follows the history of the operation and the lives of its protagonists—Reinhard Heydrich and his assassins Jozef Gabčík and Jan Kubiš. It is interlaced with the author's account of the process of researching and writing the book, his commentary about other literary and media treatments of the subject, and reflections about the extent to which the behavior of real people may of necessity be fictionalised in a historical novel.
The title is an initialism for Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich ("Himmler's brain is called Heydrich"), a quip about Heydrich said to have circulated in Nazi Germany. The title was suggested by Binet's publisher, Grasset, instead of the "too sci-fi" working title Opération Anthropoïde. The editor also requested the cut of about twenty pages criticizing Jonathan Littell's Les Bienveillantes, another novel about the SS in World War II that was awarded the Prix Goncourt in 2006. The Millions published the "missing pages" in 2012.
HHhH has been translated into more than twenty languages. The English translation by Sam Taylor was published in the US by Farrar, Straus and Giroux on 24 April 2012 and in the UK by Harvill Secker on 3 May 2012.
Awards and honours
- 2010 Prix Goncourt du Premier Roman
- 2011 Europese Literatuurprijs, shortlist
- 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award, finalist
- 2012 New York Times Notable Book of the Year
- "Le prix Goncourt du premier roman attribué à Laurent Binet pour HHhH". Le Monde. 2 March 2010. Retrieved 17 October 2010.
- Riglet, Marc (7 May 2010). "HHhH, entre "je" et "nous"". L'Express. Retrieved 17 October 2010.
- Sulser, Eleonore (13 February 2010). "Heydrich en personnage de papier". Le Temps. Retrieved 17 October 2010.[permanent dead link]
- "L'histoire de HHhH". L'Express. 6 April 2010. Retrieved 17 October 2010.
- "Exclusive: The Missing Pages of Laurent Binet's HHhH". The Millions. 16 April 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2012.
- Nawotka, Edward (25 November 2013). "It's Okay to Mistake the Author and the Narrator". Publishing Perspectives. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
- "Cannes: Jason Clarke, Rosamund Pike, Jack O'Connell Join WWII-Set Drama 'HHHH' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. 7 May 2015.
- John Williams (January 14, 2012). "National Book Critics Circle Names 2012 Award Finalists". New York Times. Retrieved January 15, 2013.