Perfume cover





Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (German: Das Parfum, pronounced [das paɐ̯ˈfœ̃ː]) is a 1985 literary historical fantasy novel by German writer Patrick Süskind. The novel explores the sense of smell and its relationship with the emotional meanings that scents may have. The story follows Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, an unloved orphan in 18th-century France who is born with an exceptional sense of smell, capable of distinguishing a vast range of scents in the world around him. Grenouille becomes a perfumer but later becomes involved in murder when he encounters a young girl with an unsurpassed wondrous scent. With translations into 49 languages and more than 20 million copies sold worldwide to date, Perfume is one of the best-selling German novels of the 20th century. The title remained in bestseller lists for about nine years, and received almost unanimously positive national and international critical acclaim. It was translated into English by John E. Woods and won both the World Fantasy Award and the PEN Translation Prize in 1987. Some editions of the novel, including the first, have as their cover image Antoine Watteau's painting Jupiter and Antiope, which depicts a sleeping woman.
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original title: Das Parfum
subtitle: Die Geschichte eines Mörders
language: German
date of publication: 1985
genre: horror novel, developmental novel, Künstlerroman, historical novel, magic realism, speculative fiction novel
narrative location: Paris


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