Author: Patrick Suskind
Date of original publication: 1985
Date of your edition: 2001
The story of Jean-Baptiste Grenouille (one of the most brilliant and horrible men of his time) takes place in France around the 18th century. Since his birth, Grenouille discovers and sees the world through the sense of smell, which is more developed than the rest of thepeople in the story. People around him, think that it is very strange that Grenouille doesn’t have scent himself.
In the novel mentions many places in Paris, such as: Rue aux fers, Rue Ferronnerie, Cimitiere des Innocents, Quai Malaquest, Grasse, Rue de Seine, Rue Mortallerie, Hopital Hotel-Dieu, Pavillon de la Flore, Rue St. Antoine, Place de la Greve, Escuela Notre-Dame de Bon Secours,Le Seine, Barrio de la Sorbone, Hotel de ville, Rue Charonne, La Bastille, Pont Neuf, and many others.
Time is historic because the whole time in the novel the author is talking of a past period. The narration is in historical time, as the narrator tells the story in past tense. The narration is progressing chronologically; the story begins when Grenouille was born until he dies.In the novel, the places are defined by the smell of their own. For example, in a charged environment can be distinguished strong and disturbing odors; and in a joyful and happy atmosphere can be distinguished smells more sensitive and full of life. The environments have the function of separating the pleasant of the unpleasant and even dangerous of safe.
The whole story starts in a dirtyand odorous market in Paris. In Paris “The streets stank of manure… People stank of sweat and unwashed clothes; from their mouth came the stench of rotting teeth, from their bellies that of onions, and from their bodies, if they were no longer very young, came the stench of rancid cheese and sour milk and tumorous disease. The rivers stank, the marketplaces stank… even the king himself stank,stank like a rank lion”
The sea represents the impossible dream of Grenouille, because he would like to go to sea to get “drunk” on his smell (which he describes as a candle was swollen and filled with salt water) but at the same time he knows that the sea is very far from where he lives (Paris).
Major Character (s):
The characters that Grenouille meet in the book are all dirty andsmelly and they don’t like Grenouille in any way. The characters groups, bone and other Parisians are, as well as dirty and smelly, somewhat receptive, affectionate and slightly higher than create it.
• Jean Baptiste Grenouille: Is the protagonist or main character of the novel. He is a very special since the day he was born, because they had an incredible sense of smell, but with a singularcharacteristic, he was totally odorless. He was born in Paris; he was ugly and not very tall, he was an arrogant, not very sociable and introverted human being. His relationship with the others was almost imaginary and not too friendly because Grenouille hated all men and women who surrounded him.
Minor or Supporting Characters:
• Grenouille’s Mother: In the novel, the writer don’t tell uswhere she was born, but when you read it he (author) describe her as a “pretty” woman because she had almost all his teeth and hair, and also she didn’t have any serious disease. He doesn’t say anything of her character, but you can see that it is a “terrible” person who only thinks about herself because she abandoned her babies and didn’t care if they die. Grenouille's mother doesn’t have anykind of relationship with other characters in the novel because she dies hanged time after given birth to Grenouille.
• Father Terrier: He was a cultured man and very proud of himself. His relationship with others characters is what he has with Jeanne Bussie who he treats with absolute superiority. With Grenouille at the beginning he feels good and comfortable but after a while, when...