In 1954, five years after her groundbreaking feminist epic The Second Sex was published, Simone de Beauvoir wrote a novel. But that novel—which in French was titled Les Inseparables—was never published in de Beauvoir's lifetime. The novel recounts what many believe was de Beauvoir's single most influential experience: her friendship with Zaza (named AndreĆ© in the novel). On September 7, some 35 years after de Beauvoir's death, Inseparable will finally be published.

The cover of the book, which Oprah Daily is revealing exclusively, is a photograph of de Beauvoir and Zaza, who died suddenly of encephalitis at age 20, and left de Beauvoir bereft, depressed, and without her closest friend. De Beauvoir wrote of her in various memoirs and other non-fiction works. But she chose not to release the novel, mainly because her partner, the influential existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre, dismissed the work as "inconsequential," causing de Beauvoir to conclude that "it seemed to have no inner necessity" and would fail "to hold the reader's interest."

Read the full story on A Reveal of the Cover of Inseparable, The Lost Novel Simone de Beauvoir Was Convinced Not to Publish


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