A literary event: one of the most celebrated novels ever written, in a magnificent new translation. Seven years ago, the incomparable Lydia Davis brought us an award- winning, rapturously reviewed new translation of Marcel Proust's Swann's Way that was hailed as "clear and true to the music of... show more
A literary event: one of the most celebrated novels ever written, in a magnificent new translation. Seven years ago, the incomparable Lydia Davis brought us an award- winning, rapturously reviewed new translation of Marcel Proust's Swann's Way that was hailed as "clear and true to the music of the original" (Los Angeles Times) and "a work of creation in its own right" (Claire Messud, Newsday). Now she turns her gifts to the book that defined the novel as an art form. When Emma Rouault marries dull, provincial doctor Charles Bovary, her dreams of an elegant and passionate life crumble. She escapes into sentimental novels but finds her fantasies dashed by the tedium of her days. Motherhood proves to be a burden; religion is only a brief distraction. She spends lavishly and embarks on a series of disappointing affairs. Soon heartbroken and crippled by debts, Emma takes drastic action with tragic consequences for her husband and daughter. When published in 1857, Madame Bovary was embraced by bourgeois women who claimed it spoke to the frustrations of their lives. Davis's landmark translation gives new life in English to Flaubert's masterwork.
Publish date: September 23rd 2010
Publisher: Viking Adult
Pages no: 311
Edition language: English
, European Literature
, Book Club
, Historical Fiction
, Classic Literature
, 19th Century
, French Literature
Monstrously selfish woman damages everything of value in her life and everyone who loves her. I found it surprisingly modern and easy to read - I practically zoomed through it. The writing is delicious and the humor is wicked. I'm only sorry that it took me so long to get around to reading it.
I understand why this book was so scandalous at the time it came out. It dared to voice the fears of many women at the time (I would go so far as to say the majority of poor and working class women). Emma, while not a likable character, was trapped by society's expectations, which to some extent m...
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I decided to pick up this book after a friend of mine saw a television adaptation of what he said was regarded as the most perfect novel ever written. Intrigued, I offered to read it with him and we both quickly acquired copies. Now that I've finished it I question the appellation. It may be a sub...