A critique of journalism and the complex politics and corruption present in the newspaper industry in Paris at the turn of the last century, this is a review of Guy de Maupassant’s Bel-Ami.
The real shining piece of this book is the ghost and the setting. The whole world of the opera house comes alive as the ghost wrecks havoc and extracts vengeance. This is a review of Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera (Le Fantôme de l’Opéra).
These two novels were written in 1942, before their author was arrested by the Nazis and sent to Auschwitz where she died of typhoid. The novels and notes were kept in a suitcase and taken by her daughter when she fled from the Nazis during the war. After that, the suitcase remained unopened until 1998. This is a review of Irène Némirovsky’s Suite Française.
This book is one of the prettiest ones that I have come across in recent time in terms of book design and binding. However, it is definitely a work that should be limited to those that have a knowledge of the time in which it was produced or are studying this specific era of literature or history. This is a review of George du Maurier’s Trilby.
Balzac’s sits nearly at the end of main street, and when you sit inside of it, it’s easy to forget that you exist in the modern world. The tin ceiling design and the white marble of the counters as well as the café set up are a comforting beckon to the past and the distant, and it was sitting at one of those counters by the window that I thought about starting a book review blog in the first place. This is a review of Honoré de Balzac’s The Wild Ass’s Skin (La Peau de Chagrin).
It might seem strange, and I’m sure it’s not a preference that many people share, but sometimes when I feel my worst — very anxious, very depressed, very not well — and can’t sleep, scary stories are what I turn to. There’s something about ghosts, goblins, vampires, and spooky houses in settings a hundred and fifty years old that draws me out of the racing thoughts my brain gets stuck in. This is a review of Horror Stories.
It’s an example of literary realism that is widely considered one of the most influential novels in literary history. It’s been adapted many times both for stage and for screen as well as being admired both by Henry James and Marcel Proust. Though it was his debut novel, it’s also considered Flaubert’s magnum opus. This is a review of Madame Bovary.
I’m sure you’ve heard of the term ‘Grand Guignol’ as it is used as a description for a modern film or novel. It was actually a theatre in Paris. This is a review of Maurice Level’s Thirty Hours with a Corpse.
Though the novel is complete in terms of narrative, it’s not exactly finished per se. There’s a note in front of my edition that explains that the decision was made to publish the work because reading as much of Camus’ as possible helps readers and scholars understand who Camus was as a writer and his process. This is a review of A Happy Death.
Due to how many adaptations it has had and how prominent it is in the canon of classic literature, I thought it would be a staple of used bookstores or the bigger new bookstores. Well, it isn’t. This is a review of Victor Hugo’s Notre-Dame de Paris or The Hunchback of Notre-Dame.