Patrick Modiano faced the media after being awarded with the 2014 Nobel Prize for Literature.
The usually retiring writer said the accolade came as a complete surprise and he was interested to discover why he was chosen.
Much of his writing focuses on the elusive themes of memory, loss and identity: “I am a prisoner when I write, you cannot be your own reader and you have a confused picture of the books you write. I am looking forward to finding out how I won this honour,” said the 69-year-old.
Modiano’s work looks back to France, particularly Paris, during the German occupation
The writer has been cherished at home for years, with only a handful of his novels translated into English.
Now as the recipient of literature’s most prestigous award everything looks set to change.