In France, Alain Robbe-Grillet's final novel was sold in shrink-wrap, labeled with a sticker warning readers that this perverse fairy tale might offend certain sensibilities. It tells the story of Gigi, also known as Djinn, who is being schooled by her father to be a perfect slave and mistress. Running the gamut of unacceptable subject matter from incest to torture, this book abounds with vignettes that explore taboos and their representation in fiction, from the Brothers Grimm to the Marquis de Sade. It is titillating and disgusting, the work of a dirty old man or brilliant agent provocateur -- or both.
Following The Erasers (1953), his first novel, Alain Robbe-Grillet (1922--2008) quickly established himself as the chief spokesman for the nouveau roman movement. Along with his fiction, his essay collection For a New Novel and his screenplay for Alain Resnais's Last Year at Marienbad have influenced countless artists across the world.