Raymond Roussel

Raymond Roussel was a French poet, novelist, playwright, musician, and chess enthusiast. He is best known for his works 'Impressions of Africa' and 'Locus Solus,' which have been influential in the Surrealist and Oulipo movements.


This list of books are ONLY the books that have been ranked on the lists that are aggregated on this site. This is not a comprehensive list of all books by this author.

  1. 1. Locus Solus

    "Locus Solus" is an avant-garde novel that revolves around the eccentric millionaire inventor, Canterel, who invites a group of guests to visit his estate, Locus Solus. Here, he displays a series of bizarre inventions, each with a detailed backstory. The inventions include a diamond-encrusted machine that constructs intricate mosaics using human teeth, a large glass cage filled with preserved human heads that reenact key moments from their lives, and a device that uses preserved body parts to perform a grotesque ballet. The narrative is heavily detailed and surreal, creating a unique and intriguing exploration of art, life, and the human condition.

    The 1307th Greatest Book of All Time
  2. 2. Impressions of Africa

    In this surrealistic novel, a group of Europeans are stranded in Africa after their ship is hijacked by a local monarch. While held captive, each of the characters narrates a fantastical tale or performance, showcasing their unique talents and skills. The narrative is filled with bizarre inventions, intricate wordplay, and a dizzying array of subplots, all of which are eventually woven together in a complex and cryptic manner. The novel is a testament to the author's imagination and his ability to create a world that is both strange and captivating.

    The 2223rd Greatest Book of All Time