Patrick Suskind's Perfume is a classic novel of death and sensuality in Paris 'In eighteenth-century France there lived a man who was one of the most gifted and abominable personages in an era that knew no lack of gifted and abominable personages. His name was Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, and if his name has been forgotten today, it is certainly not because Grenouille fell short of those more famous blackguards when it came to arrogance, misanthropy, immorality, or, more succinctly, wickedness, but because his gifts and his sole ambition were restricted to a domain that leaves no traces in history: to the fleeting realm of scent ...' 'An astonishing tour de force both in concept and execution' Guardian 'A fantastic tale of murder and twisted eroticism controlled by a disgusted loathing of humanity ...Clever, stylish, absorbing and well worth reading' Literary Review 'A meditation on the nature of death, desire and decay ...a remarkable debut' Peter Ackroyd, The New York Times Book Review 'Unlike anything else one has read. A phenomenon ...Everyone seems to want to get a whiff of this strange perfume, which will remain unique in contemporary literature' Figaro 'An ingenious and totally absorbing fantasy' Daily Telegraph 'Witty, stylish and ferociously absorbing' Observer Patrick Suskind was born near Munich, in 1949. He studied medieval and modern history at the University of Munich. His first play, The Double Bass, was written in 1980 and became an international success. His first novel, Perfume, became an internationally acclaimed bestseller. He is also the author of The Pigeon and Mr. Summer's Story, and a coauthor of the enormously successful German television series Kir Royal. Patrick Suskind lives and writes in Munich.
The regions of the world which experience a mediterranean type climate, with a cool wet season alternating with a hot dry summer, contain some of the world's most attractive landscapes. In the Old World, the mediterranean landscapes became the cradle of civilization; other mediterranean areas of the world have attracted considerable populations for many centuries. These large human populations have exerted consid- erable stress on the fragile ecosystems which developed in these sunny, but droughted, fire-prone land- scapes. The mediterranean landscape has thus become one of the most threatened in the world. In recent years much has been learned about the structure and function of mediterranean-type ecosystems (Di Castri and Mooney 1973, Mooney 1977, Thrower and Bradbury 1977, Mooney and Conrad 1977, Specht 1979, 1981, Miller 1981, Di Castri et at. 1981, Conrad and Oeche11982, Queze11982, Margaris and Mooney 1981, Kruger et ai. 1983, Long and Pons 1984, Dell et ai. 1986, Tenhunen et ai. 1987). Much of this research has been fostered under the International Biological Program (IBP), UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Program (MAB) and, recently, the International Society of Mediterranean Ecologists (ISOMED). To facilitate intercontinental comparisons, many of these studies have concentrated on a limited number of intensive sites thought to be representative of a general region.
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