Guy de Maupassant - 1884
    She had fled home, had escaped like a wounded animal, wounded in fact most deeply by those words which she ceaselessly repeated to get all their sense and bearing: "You know very well that there can be no question of marriage between us--but only of love."

The Red and the Black

Stendhal - 1830
    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 takes him into the heart of glamorous Parisian society, along the way conquering the gentle, married Madame de Rênal, and the haughty Mathilde. But then Julien commits an unexpected, devastating crime - and brings about his own downfall. The Red and the Black is a lively, satirical portrayal of French society after Waterloo, riddled with corruption, greed, and ennui, and Julien - the cold exploiter whose Machiavellian campaign is undercut by his own emotions - is one of the most intriguing characters in European literature.

Queen Margot, or Marguerite de Valois

Alexandre Dumas - 1845
    Massacres, conspiracies, clandestine trysts, secret alliances, daring escapes, sumptuous feasts, and duels of wit propel the action in this delightful story of French royalty during the 16th century. Advertising with movie.


Prosper Mérimée - 1840
    He was also a lawyer, a public official, a senator, a painter, an authority on Russian literature and a member of the French Academy. As a public official, M rim e travelled through France and Europe, from which he drew inspiration for his stories and novels. His first popular novella, "Colomba," was published in 1840. It is set in Corsica, and tells the story of the della Rebbia family, whose father has been murdered in an ambush, believed by his daughter to have been perpetrated by the town's mayor, Lawyer Barricini. She implores her brother, Lieutenant Orso della Rebbia, to avenge their father's death, but Orso does not share her passionate ancestral pride. His heart is torn between personal vendetta and a propensity to abide by the law.

Rides a Dread Legion / At the Gates of Darkness

Raymond E. Feist - 2013
    Feist. This bundle includes the complete Demonwar Saga.The bundle includes: Rides a Dread Legion (1), At the Gates of Darkness(2).Ten years after the cataclysmic events of Wrath of a Mad God, Midkemia now faces a new danger thoughts buried in myth and antiquity…A lost race of elves, the Taredhel or ‘people of the stars’, have found a way across the universe to reach Midkemia.Hard pressed by a ravaging demon horde, what was once a huge empire has been reduced to a handful of survivors. The cornerstone of Taredhel lore is the tale of their lost origins on the world they simply call “Home”. They are convinced that Midkemia is that place. They are coming to reclaim it, and they intend to let nothing stand in their way.Pug and the Conclave, however, soon realise it’s not the elves, but the demon horde pursuing them that presents the greater danger…

Lost Illusions

Honoré de Balzac - 1843
    Failing to make his name in his dull provincial hometown, he is taken up by a patroness, the captivating married woman Madame de Bargeton, and prepares to forge his way in the glamorous beau monde of Paris. But Lucien has entered a world far more dangerous than he realized, as Madame de Bargeton's reputation becomes compromised and the fickle, venomous denizens of the courts and salons conspire to keep him out of their ranks. Lucien eventually learns that, wherever he goes, talent counts for nothing in comparison to money, intrigue and unscrupulousness. Lost Illusions is one of the greatest novels in the rich procession of the Comedie humaine, Balzac's panoramic social and moral history of his times.

Journey to the End of the Night

Louis-Ferdinand Céline - 1932
    Filled with slang and obscenities and written in raw, colloquial language, Journey to the End of the Night is a literary symphony of violence, cruelty and obscene nihilism. This book shocked most critics when it was first published in France in 1932, but quickly became a success with the reading public in Europe, and later in America where it was first published by New Directions in 1952. The story of the improbable yet convincingly described travels of the petit-bourgeois (and largely autobiographical) antihero, Bardamu, from the trenches of World War I, to the African jungle, to New York and Detroit, and finally to life as a failed doctor in Paris, takes the readers by the scruff and hurtles them toward the novel's inevitable, sad conclusion.

Thérèse Raquin

Émile Zola - 1867
    Published in 1867, this is Zola's most important work before the Rougon-Macquart series and introduces many of the themes that can be traced through the later novel cycle.

The First Man

Albert Camus - 1994
    Although it was not published for over thirty years, it was an instant bestseller when it finally appeared in 1994. The 'first man' is Jacques Cormery, whose poverty-stricken childhood in Algiers is made bearable by his love for his silent and illiterate mother, and by the teacher who transforms his view of the world. The most autobiographical of Camus's novels, it gives profound insights into his life, and the powerful themes underlying his work.

Les Fleurs du Mal

Charles Baudelaire - 1857
    Tableaux Parisiens condemns the crushing effects of urban planning on a city's soul and praises the city's anti-heroes including the deranged and derelict. Le Vin centers on the search for oblivion in drink and drugs. The many kinds of love that lie outside traditional morality is the focus of Fleurs du Mal while rebellion is at the heart of Révolte.

The Princesse de Clèves

Madame de La Fayette - 1678
    This new translation of The Princesse de Clèves also includes two shorter works also attributed to Mme de Lafayette, The Princesse de Montpensier and The Comtesse de Tende.

The Devil in the Flesh

Raymond Radiguet - 1923
    The narrator, a boy of sixteen, tells of his love affair with Martha Lacombe, a young woman whose soldier husband is away at the front. With an accuracy of insight that is almost ruthless, he describes his conflicting emotions—the pride of an adolescent on the verge of manhood and the pain of a child thrust too fast into maturity.The liaison soon becomes a scandal, and their friends, horrified and incredulous, refuse to accept what is happening—even when the affair reaches its tragic climax.

Jacques the Fatalist

Denis Diderot - 1785
    If human beings are determined by their genes and their environment, how can they claim to be free to want or do anything? Where are Jacques and his Master going? Are they simply occupying space, living mechanically until they die, believing erroneously that they are in charge of their Destiny? Diderot intervenes to cheat our expectations of what fiction should be and do, and behaves like a provocative, ironic and unfailingly entertaining master of revels who finally show why Fate is not to be equated with doom. In the introduction to this brilliant new translation, David Coward explains the philosophical basis of Diderot's fascination with Fate and shows why Jacques the Fatalist pioneers techniques of fiction which, two centuries on, novelists still regard as experimental.

Sentimental Education

Gustave Flaubert - 1869
    It is the beginning of an infatuation that will last a lifetime. He befriends her husband, an influential businessman, and as their paths cross and re-cross over the years, Mme Arnoux remains the constant, unattainable love of Moreau’s life. Blending love story, historical authenticity, and satire, Sentimental Education is one of the great French novels of the nineteenth century.

Manon Lescaut

Antoine François Prévost d'Exiles - 1731
    It is one of the great love stories, and also one of the most enigmatic: how reliable a witness is Des Grieux, Manon's lover, whose tale he narrates? Is Manon a thief and a whore, the image of love itself, or a thoroughly modern woman? Prevost is careful to leave the ambiguities unresolved, and to lay bare the disorders of passion." This new translation includes the vignette and eight illustrations that were approved by Prevost and first published in the edition of 1753.