Natalie's perfect life is shattered by the unexpected death of her beloved husband. The still young, beautiful widow seems to take the advice of Sting and builds a fortress around her heart. She dives into work, creating a sterile existence where she numbly goes through the motions of living life. At first, it's uttery wrenching to witness, but French novelist David Foenkinos isn't one to hang crepe, and in Delicacy he has created a novel that's a cheery, addictive confection of zany footnotes and asides.
Foenkinos takes the tale on an upswing by introducing Natalie's coworker, Marcus, a seemingly unsuitable suitor who nearly by accident attempts to melt her frozen heart. Many laugh-out-loud moments ensue when the rest of the office doesn't believe that Natalie would ever be interested in such a plain specimen of a man. In addition to the will-she-or-won't-she plot, Foenkinos includes several half-page chapters that provide commentary on action that just took place, from a Wikipedia definition of Pez candy or the football scores of the matches playing the night Natalie rejects a potential lover to a menu of what Natalie and Marcus ate during their first dinner out. These supplements are a stroke of brilliance, providing a fly-on-the wall perspective on this offbeat story of loss, love and unexpected twists of fate. --Natalie Papailiou, blogger at MILF: Mother I'd Like to Friend