Jean-Claude Izzo

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Jean-Claude Izzo
Born(1945-06-20)20 June 1945
Marseille, France
Died26 January 2000(2000-01-26) (aged 54)
Marseille, France
GenreMediterranean noir, crime novel
Notable worksThe Marseille Trilogy
Notable awardsTrophées 813, Prix Sang d'Encre

Jean-Claude Izzo (Marseille 20 June 1945 – Marseille 26 January 2000) was a French poet, playwright, screenwriter, and novelist who achieved sudden fame in the mid-1990s with the publication of his three neo-noir crime novels Total Chaos, Chourmo, and Solea (widely known as the Marseilles Trilogy), featuring as protagonist ex-cop Fabio Montale, and set in the author's native city of Marseille. All have been translated into English by Howard Curtis.

Jean-Claude Izzo was born on 20 June 1945 in Marseille, France. His father was an Italian immigrant from Castel San Giorgio (provincia di Salerno) and his maternal grandfather was a Spanish immigrant. He excelled in school and spent much of his time at his desk writing stories and poems. But because of his "immigrant" status, he was forced into a technical school where he was taught how to operate a lathe.

In 1963, he began work in a bookstore. He also actively campaigned on behalf of Pax Christi, a Catholic peace movement. Then, in 1964, he was called up for military duty in Toulon and Djibouti. He worked for the military newspaper as a photographer and journalist.


  • Poèmes à haute voix (P.J. Oswald, 1970)
  • Terres de feu (P.J. Oswald, 1972)
  • État de veille (P.J. Oswald, 1974)
  • Braises, brasiers, brûlures (poesie illustrate da E. Damofli, 1975)
  • Paysage de femme (Guy Chambelland, 1975)
  • Le réel au plus vif (Guy Chambelland, 1976)
  • Clovis Hughes, un rouge du Midi (J. Laffitte, 1978)
  • Total Kheops (Gallimard, Série Noire, 1995). Italian translation Casino totale (Editions and/or, 1998). English translation Total Chaos (New York: Europa Editions, 2005).
  • Chourmo (Gallimard, Série Noire, 1996). Italian translation Chourmo. Il cuore di Marsiglia (Editions and/or, 1999). English translation Chourmo (New York: Europa Editions, 2006).
  • Loin de tous rivages (Ed. du Ricochet, 1997)
  • Les marins perdus (Flammarion, 1997). Italian translation Marinai perduti (Editions and/or, 2001). English translation The Lost Sailors (New York: Europa Editions, 2007). Dutch translation Eindpunt Marseille (Breda: De Geus, 2007).
  • Vivre fatigue (Librio, 1998). Italian translation Vivere stanca (Editions and/or, 2001)
  • Soléa (Gallimard, Série Noire, 1998). Italian translation Solea (Editions and/or, 2000). English translation Solea (New York: Europa Editions, 2007).
  • L'Aride des jours (Ed. du Ricochet, 1999)
  • Le soleil des mourants (Flammarion, 1999). Italian translation Il sole dei morenti (Editions and/or, 2000). English translation A Sun for the Dying (New York: Europa Editions, 2008).
  • Un temps immobile (Filigrane Editions, 1999)
  • La Méditerranée en fragments (Maison méditerranéenne des sciences de l'homme, 2000) Italian translation Frammenti di Mediterraneo story in Rappresentare il Mediterraneo. Lo sguardo francese (Mesogea, 2000)
  • Marseille (Hoëbeke, 2000). Italian translation Aglio, menta e basilico (Editions and/or, 2006)


Filmography as an author or screenwriter[edit]

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