This is the story of Mellie, who as a baby is found in a grotto, then raised in a souvenir shop by Rose. At age twelve Mellie goes to the dying town of Oât, where she enters premature adulthood and assembles a photographic and written record of her life. Enchanting, realistic, comic, tragic—all these words describe this spellbinding novel that, like all genuine fables, takes us to a world that is utterly strange and very much our own.
Rose Mellie Rose is one of three novels that are the first works to appear in English by Marie Redonnet, one of France's most original new authors (the other novels are Hôtel Splendid and Forever Valley, both also available from the University of Nebraska Press). Translator Jordan Stump notes that these books "unmistakably fit together, although they have neither characters nor setting in common." In all three novels, Redonnet has said, "it is the women who fight, who seek, who create."