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Our selection of realistic novels for adults

Our selection of realistic novels for adults

Four novels in French for adults, available on Culturethèque. Four digital books for advanced learners in French and Francophones. Four ways of escaping through striking stories about family, nostalgia, animal extinction, love, dictatorship, and most of all, our contemporary world. Enjoy our recommendations! 

The following books are all available online on Culturethèque. If a book is not available at the moment you want to read it, it is possible to reserve it. 

If you prefer reading books over eBooks, you can use AmazonSmile to order the books we recommend, while supporting us. When you order from AmazonSmile, they donate to us at no extra cost! Find the banner at the bottom right-hand corner of this article to add us as your supporting organization.

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By Négar DJAVADI, 2018

The narrator is Kimiâ Sadr, a woman that has lived in Paris since she was 10 years old, after fleeing Iran. This is the story of her family across three generations. It relates family and political problems, and the teenage years. The story is a real puzzle of memories and stories, of past and present events, and it is a moving story about family, nostalgia, and exile.

This French book is well-written, and we strongly recommend it. The title is a mix between “disoriented” and “oriental”, and I would advise it for Francophone people, or people with a good level of French, because there is a lot of advanced vocabulary. You can download it on Culturethèque.


By Niels LABUZAN, digital book, 2019 - 250 pages

This is a really well-documented book in French, whose dramatic story takes place in Botswana. In this story, several characters fight, whether to poach elephants or to protect them. This is a beautiful and realistic book about the relation between man and wildlife. There is a great tension and rhythm, as tragic events come one after another. But there is also a small part of hope, as some of the characters struggle to prevent animal extinction.


By Caryl FÉRY, digital book, 2016 - 416 pages 

The story takes place across Chile. It begins in the disadvantaged areas of the capital city Santiago, and ends in the Atacama desert. It’s a book about the difficult history of the country, affected by the dictatorship in the 1970s and its consequences. It’s also a love story between a Mapuche and a lawyer from a rich family. 

The author, Caryl Férey, is a French crime novelist, who worked for a while for the Guide du Routard, a tour guide. He travels a lot and prepares his books by spending a lot of time in the countries he wants to talk about, as well as deeply investigating the topics he chooses. This is why his books are always incredible sagas and real journeys. He wrote several stories for which he won awards, such as Zulu, which takes place in South Africa. This last work was then adapted in a movie. He always writes about countries with a dark and violent history, and his stories are very violent and complex. His work mixes crime with sociological, political and economics topics. Three of his books are available on Culturethèque, downloadable in an ePub format.

“La Carte et le Territoire”

By Michel HOUELLEBECQ and Agathe N-CHEVALIER, digital book, 2016  

This story is a mix of a variety of characters: Olga, a Russian girl, a policeman called Jasselin, the TV presenter Jean-Pierre Pernaut, and the author himself, Michel Houellebecq. This is, all at once, a realistic and futuristic novel, a crime novel and an artist story, a mix between fiction and reality. Most of all, this is a reflection on our contemporary world.

This French book is now considered a classic of Francophone contemporary literature and its author was recommended by one of our members. It was written by the French author Michel Houellebecq and won the prestigious Goncourt Prize in 2010. Here, this is an educational version presented by Agathe Novak-Lechevalier. It is downloadable easily on Culturethèque.