A SPECTATOR BOOK OF THE YEAR 2022
‘Beautiful and deep … a sumptuous treat for any book lover’ The Independent
‘There is so much to discover in these stories – both history and food for short story lovers everywhere’ Irish Times
A major new celebration of the French short story
The short story has a rich tradition in French literature. This feast of an anthology celebrates its most famous practitioners, as well as newly translated writers ready for rediscovery. Here are decadent tales, ‘bloody tales’, fairy tales, detective stories and war stories. They are stories about the self and the other, husbands, wives and lovers, country and city, rich and poor.
The first volume spans four hundred years, taking the reader from the sixteenth century to the ‘golden age’ of the fin de siÃ¨cle. Its pages are populated by lovers, phantoms, cardinals, labourers, enchanted statues, gentleman burglars, retired bureaucrats, panthers and parrots, in a cacophony of styles and voices. From the affairs of Madame de Lafayette to the polemic realism of Victor Hugo, the supernatural mystery of Guy de Maupassant to the dark sensuality of Rachilde, this is the place to start for lovers of French literature, new and old.
Edited and with an introduction by Patrick McGuinness, academic, writer and translator.
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