Madame Bovary

Oh, why, dear God, did I marry him n nEmma Bovary is beautiful and bored, trapped in her marriage to a mediocre doctor and stifled by the banality of provincial life An ardent devourer of sentimental novels, she longs for passion and seeks escape in fantasies of high romance, in voracious spending

The Little Prince

Moral allegory and spiritual autobiography, The Little Prince is the most translated book in the French language With a timeless charm it tells the story of a little boy who leaves the safety of his own tiny planet to travel the universe, learning the vagaries of adult behaviour through a series of

Candide

Candide is the story of a gentle man who, though pummeled and slapped in every direction by fate, clings desperately to the belief that he lives in the best of all possible worlds On the surface a witty, bantering tale, this eighteenth century classic is actually a savage, satiric thrust at the p

Les Liaisons dangereuses

The complex moral ambiguities of seduction and revenge make Les Liaisons dangereuses 1782 one of the most scandalous and controversial novels in European literature The subject of major film and stage adaptations, the novel s prime movers, the Vicomte de Valmont and the Marquise de Merteuil, form

Bel-Ami

Guy de Maupassant s scandalous tale of an opportunistic young man corrupted by the allure of power, Bel Ami is translated with an introduction by Douglas Parmee in Penguin Classics Young, attractive and very ambitious, George Duroy, known to his admirers as Bel Ami, is offered a job as a journa

Les Misérables

Introducing one of the most famous characters in literature, Jean Valjean the noble peasant imprisoned for stealing a loaf of bread Les Mis rables ranks among the greatest novels of all time In it, Victor Hugo takes readers deep into the Parisian underworld, immerses them in a battle between good a

The Red and the Black

Handsome, ambitious Julien Sorel is determined to rise above his humble provincial origins Soon realizing that success can only be achieved by adopting the subtle code of hypocrisy by which society operates, he begins to achieve advancement through deceit and self interest His triumphant career ta

L'Écume des jours

Chick, Alise, Chlo et Colin passent leur temps dire des choses rigolotes, couter Duke Ellington et patiner Dans ce monde o les pianos sont des m langeurs cocktails, la r alit semble ne pas avoir de prise On se marie l glise comme on va la f te foraine et on ignore le travail, qui

Cyrano de Bergerac

This is Edmond Rostand s immortal play in which chivalry and wit, bravery and love are forever captured in the timeless spirit of romance Set in Louis XIII s reign, it is the moving and exciting drama of one of the finest swordsmen in France, gallant soldier, brilliant wit, tragic poet lover with t

Swann's Way (In Search of Lost Time, #1)

Swann s Way tells two related stories, the first of which revolves around Marcel, a younger version of the narrator, and his experiences in, and memories of, the French town Combray Inspired by the gusts of memory that rise up within him as he dips a Madeleine into hot tea, the narrator discusses

The Plague

A gripping tale of human unrelieved horror, of survival and resilience, and of the ways in which humankind confronts death, The Plague is at once a masterfully crafted novel, eloquently understated and epic in scope, and a parable of ageless moral resonance, profoundly relevant to our times In Oran

Sentimental Education

Based on Flaubert s own youthful passion for an older woman, Sentimental Education was described by its author as the moral history of the men of my generation It follows the amorous adventures of Frederic Moreau, a law student who, returning home to Normandy from Paris, notices Mme Arnoux, a sle