photo © Ali Ghandtschi


Olivier Guez [France]

Olivier Guez was born in Strasbourg in 1974. He graduated from Sciences Po Strasbourg and earned a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and the Collège dʼEurope in Bruges. As a journalist, he has written for Le Monde, Le Point, FAZ, New York Times, and Il Corriere delle Sera.

Guez earned his reputation as an author with his 2007 book LʼImpossible retour. Une histoire des juifs en Allemagne depuis 1945 (tr: The Impossible Return: A History of Jews in Germany since 1945). The book explores the situation faced by returning Jewish immigrants after World War II. His other books, mostly devoted to German or European history, also contain elements of historical reconstruction and first-hand accounts. Notable examples include the non-fiction novel La Chute de Mur (2009; tr: The Wall Falls), written together with Jean-Marc Gonin, and La Disparation de Josef Mengele (2009; tr: The Disappearance of Josef Mengele), which paints a sober yet highly vivid portrait of the former doctor at Auschwitz. The novel was nominated for the Prix Goncourt, received the Prix Renaudot in 2017, and became an international bestseller. The core themes of this book are similar to those of the film Der Staat gegen Fritz Bauer [2015; tr: The People vs. Fritz Bauer, directed by Lars Kraume), for which Guez wrote the screenplay and subsequently received the German Film Award in 2016. His modern picaresque novel Les Revolutions de Jacques Koskas (2014; tr: The Revolution of Jacques Koskas) about a young French man who is struggling to make his way in Berlin in the new millennium has recently been translated into German. In 2022, Guez edited the anthology Le Grand Tour, which consists of short stories and narratives by writers from all EU member states that focus on places of European culture and history. Guez lives in Rome.