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François Grosjean
Professor Emeritus

In Search of Roger and Sallie
(A la recherche de Roger et Sallie)

by François Grosjean

François, the author, was brought up by nannies, foster families and in boarding schools. In his youth, he never ceased to ask himself questions about his parents: Who was Roger, a French Air Force pilot who had made his way to London during the Second World War? What about Sallie, a young English theatre stage manager? How had they met? Where and how had they lived, first in England and then in France? Why had they separated? Had they really loved each other? Why did they have two children when clearly they were not meant for each other? And why did their children never live with them?

At age 57, François set off to find out about his parents. His father had died thirty years earlier and for decades he had had no contact with his mother. His search lasted twelve years. Finally, thanks to unpublished manuscripts and letters he managed to obtain, as well as military archives he was given access to, he was able to reassemble their life together, find answers to his questions, as well as gather surprising new information.

His quest in Paris, London and Rome, delved into the worlds of fighter pilots, double agents and espionage, haute couture and jazz, horse breeding and archeology.

This book presents the story of two astonishing people who were brought together by the secret activities each carried out during the war, and who separated once the conflict was over, leaving two children on the side and, until now, in the dark.

Currently, only the French version of the book is available and can be ordered at Payot Libraire.

For a newspaper article, see here, and a short video interview, here.

Université de Neuchâtel, Ave. du Premier-Mars 26, 2000 Neuchâtel, Suisse/Switzerland