Monaco: A Boy Growing up in a Rich Microstate

Europe gives me gray hair! The micro countries in Europe are not famous for the literature they produce, or at least it is not easy to find books in English. Monaco is so tiny that obviously there are not many books to choose from. Luckily, I found Born in Monaco by Patrick R. Faure. Even better, I found it as an e-book. Nowadays I am happy to find pretty much any book, as long as I found a book from every country.

I knew this book would be different from the other biographies or true stories I have read for this challenge so far. It is Monaco after all. Patrick Faure grew up in Monaco. The 1950s were a bit different from the Monaco we hear about today. Not everyone were millionaires after the wars. Still, Monaco was richer than most places in Europe. The Monaco Grand prix was already a big deal back then, and especially for a small boy growing up in Monaco.

Patrick seems to have lived a normal happy life in Monaco. The reader gets to know a lot about his family, their connections and traditions. I found the most interesting parts to be about Patrick’s days at the different schools he went to. I especially enjoyed the story about him and a few other boys switching places with girls, so that the boys went a girls’ school and vice versa. That is something I do not remember reading about in any other book.

The book itself did not awaken any special emotions. It was quite plain and ordinary, in a way that I will probably not remember much of it. Sadly, it seems like ordinary stories simply does not satisfy a reader like me. In a way it is weird, since there is a lack of everyday, ordinary stories, because everything has to be shocking, sad or in some way extraordinary to be memorable. On the other hand, I want to read about things, people and countries I am not familiar with, and even though the book fulfills those criteria, it lacks something vital. It is not a bad book, nor is it poorly written, it just does not have what it takes for me to recommend a book to another person.

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