Nicolas Sarkozy emerged from the Downing Street dining room with Tony Blair and announced to his aides: “Tony and I have just taken a decision. We’re going to conquer Europe.”
The scene appears in an intimate portrait of Mr Sarkozy’s march to power that is expected to cause a sensation with its dissection of the French President’s Napoleonic personality.
Super-Sarko is vain, self-obsessed and cruel but he also shows a vulnerable, childlike side, along with an absolute confidence in his own judgment, according to Yasmina Reza, France’s most celebrated playwright.
In a calculated risk, Mr Sarkozy invited Reza to accompany him from last September through to his installation in the Elysée Palace in May. The playwright pulls few punches in her book,L’Aube, le Soir ou la Nuit (Dawn, Evening or the Night), published tomorrow. But she also shows affection for the “boyish” President. More...