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Adieu

by Honoré De Balzac

"Adieu" by Balzac is a captivating addition to French Literature. It is a long tale encompassing insanity and the supernatural. This thrilling fantasy enraptures the readers and flares the imagnation. This simple plot evolves from characters and weaves a web of suspense. Interesting!

El coronel Chabert

by Honoré De Balzac

Los mejores libros jamás escritos. La asombrosa historia del coronel Chabert, un héroe de las campañas napoleónicas a quien se dio equivocadamente por muerto, acompañada de tres relatos magistrales. El coronel Chabert (1832) es una sobrecogedora novela breve que retrata una sociedad donde la justicia y el honor han perdido su significado. Chabert, héroe de las campañas napoleónicas, es dado por muerto en la batalla de Eylau y arrojado a una fosa. No obstante, el coronel recobra el conocimiento y consigue salir de la tumba. Como si fuera un espectro, regresa a París para reclamar una identidad que nadie le reconoce. Y menos aún su esposa. Completan el volumen tres cuentos magistrales: «El verdugo», un macabro episodio de lealtad familiar ambientado en España durante la guerra de la Independencia; «El elixir de larga vida», una alucinada versión del mito de Don Juan, y «La obra maestra desconocida», que relata los intentos de un pintor por reproducir la esencia de una mujer. Esta edición, que se presenta en impecable traducción de Mercedes López-Ballesteros, se complementa con una cronología y también con un bello ensayo de Paul Bourget, escritor y académico que retrató con acierto al Balzac de las distancias cortas. «Me vi repentinamente aquejado de una dolencia, el asco por la humanidad.»

Cousin Betty

by Honoré De Balzac

La Cousine Bette (French pronunciation: [la kuzin bɛt], Cousin Bette) is an 1846 novel by French author Honoré de Balzac. Set in mid-19th century Paris, it tells the story of an unmarried middle-aged woman who plots the destruction of her extended family. Bette works with Valérie Marneffe, an unhappily married young lady, to seduce and torment a series of men. One of these is Baron Hector Hulot, husband to Bette's cousin Adeline. He sacrifices his family's fortune and good name to please Valérie, who leaves him for a tradesman named Crevel. The book is part of the Scènes de la vie parisienne section of Balzac's novel sequence La Comédie humaine ("The Human Comedy").

Cousin Pons

by Honoré De Balzac

Mild, harmless and ugly to behold, the impoverished Pons is an ageing musician whose brief fame has fallen to nothing. Living a placid Parisian life as a bachelor in a shared apartment with his friend Schmucke, he maintains only two passions: a devotion to fine dining in the company of wealthy but disdainful relatives, and a dedication to the collection of antiques. When these relatives become aware of the true value of his art collection, however, their sneering contempt for the parasitic Pons rapidly falls away as they struggle to obtain a piece of the weakening man's inheritance. Taking its place in the Human Comedy as a companion to Cousin Bette, the darkly humorous Cousin Pons is among of the last and greatest of Balzac's novels concerning French urban society: a cynical, pessimistic but never despairing consideration of human nature.

A Daughter of Eve

by Honoré De Balzac

This short novel, part of the Scenes of Private Life section of Honore de Balzac's vast masterpiece The Human Comedy, includes the first appearances of key characters who return later in the series. A Daughter of Eve is a tale in which seemingly innocent peccadilloes soon spiral into an inescapable web of intrigue, fraud, and lust.

A Distinguished Provincial at Paris

by Honoré De Balzac

Honoré de Balzac (20 May 1799 - 18 August 1850) was a French novelist and playwright best known for a sequence of short stories and novels collectively entitled La Comédie humaine, which presents a panorama of French life in the years after the 1815 fall of Napoleon. <P> <P> Due to his keen observation of detail and unfiltered representation of society, Balzac is regarded as one of the founders of realism in European literature. He is renowned for his multi-faceted characters, who are complex, morally ambiguous and fully human. His writing influenced many subsequent novelists such as Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Gustave Flaubert, Henry James, and William Faulkner. Many of Balzac's works have been made into or have inspired films, and they are a continuing source of inspiration for writers, filmmakers and critics

Domestic Peace

by Honoré De Balzac

Dedicated to the author's dear niece, Valentine Surville, this vivid and incisive novella is constructed like a classical French play, observing the three unities of time (an hour), place (a ball) and subject (the seduction of a young woman). Contrary to what the title might lead one to expect, the work is not concerned with the married life of the French bourgeoisie; it is, rather, a scintillating depiction of high society under the First Empire.

Droll Stories -- Volume 1

by Honoré De Balzac

Balzac was originally trained as a lawyer before deciding his dream was to become a writer. He is now regarded as one of the creators of realism in literature & his huge production of novels & short stories are collected under the name La Comedie Humaine. This volume contains 30 of Balzac's tales split into three sections.

Droll Stories -- Volume 2

by Honoré De Balzac

Balzac was originally trained as a lawyer before deciding his dream was to become a writer. He is now regarded as one of the creators of realism in literature & his huge production of novels & short stories are collected under the name La Comedie Humaine. This volume contains 30 of Balzac's tales split into three sections.

Droll Stories -- Volume 3

by Honoré De Balzac

Balzac was originally trained as a lawyer before deciding his dream was to become a writer. He is now regarded as one of the creators of realism in literature & his huge production of novels & short stories are collected under the name La Comedie Humaine. This volume contains 30 of Balzac's tales split into three sections.

El elixir de larga vida

by Honoré De Balzac

Trabajador infatigable, Balzac produciría cerca de 95 novelas y numerosos relatos cortos, obras de teatro y artículos de prensa luego de 1829, cuando escribió la novela Los chuanes, la primera que lleva su nombre. En 1834 concibió la idea de fundir todas sus novelas en una obra única, La comedia humana. Su intención era ofrecer un gran fresco de la sociedad francesa en todos sus aspectos, desde la Revolución hasta su época. En una famosa introducción escrita en 1842 explicaba la filosofía de la obra, en la cual se reflejaban algunos de los puntos de vista de los escritores naturalistas. Balzac afirmaba que así como los diferentes entornos y la herencia producen diversas especies de animales, las presiones sociales generan diferencias entre los seres humanos. Se propuso de este modo describir cada una de lo que llamaba "especies humanas". La obra incluiría 150 novelas, divididas en tres grupos principales: Estudios de costumbres, Estudios filosóficos y Estudios analíticos. El primer grupo, que abarca la mayor parte de su obra ya escrita, se subdivide a su vez en seis escenas: privadas, provinciales, parisinas, militares, políticas y campesinas. Balzac logró completar aproximadamente dos tercios de este enorme proyecto. El objetivo de Balzac era ofrecer una descripción absolutamente realista de la sociedad francesa, algo fascinante para el autor. Sin embargo, su grandeza reside en la capacidad para trascender la mera representación y dotar a sus novelas de una especie de suprarrealismo. La descripción del entorno es en sus obras casi tan importante como el desarrollo de los personajes. Balzac afirmó en cierta ocasión que "los acontecimientos de la vida pública y privada están íntimamente relacionados con la arquitectura", y en consecuencia, describe las casas y las habitaciones en las que se mueven sus personajes de tal modo que revelen sus pasiones y deseos.

An Episode under the Terror

by Honoré De Balzac

Set in the aftermath of the French Revolution, this short story from the Scenes of Political Life section of Honore de Balzac's The Human Comedy immerses readers in the terrifying tumult of the period. Brimming with mystery and suspense, this is historical fiction at its very best.

Eugenia Grandet

by Honoré De Balzac

Eugenia Grandet es la hija de un mezquino y avariento personaje que ha logrado acumular una buena cantidad de riqueza. Eugenia es ambicionada por diversos pretendientes que desean contraer matrimonio con la muchacha para poder heredar así la fortuna de Grandet. Ella se enamorará de su primo Charles, un apuesto joven que se verá envuelto en una serie de problemas emocionales y monetarios. Maestro de la novela realista, Balzac testimonia con agudeza en todos sus textos el ambiente que le rodea, precisando con habilidad las características psicológicas de suspersonajes y describiendo lúcidamente sus entornos.

Eugénie Grandet

by Honoré De Balzac

Los mejores libros jamás escritos. Eugénie Grandet es la obra maestra de Honoré de Blazac. Como dijo Oscar Wilde, el siglo XIX es un invento de Balzac. Dentro de La comedia humana, el vasto ciclo de su novelística,Eugénie Grandet ocupa un lugar cenital. La historia del avaro Grandet y de su hija Eugénie, que vive desgarrada entre la tiranía de su padre y el amor por un joven parisino, compone el mejor retrato coral de la sociedad francesa de la época, a la vez que presenta a algunos de los personajes más perfectos de la historia de la literatura. No en vano, esta obra ha sido a lo largo de los años la más persistentemente popular de cuantas escribió su autor. En exquisita traducción de Joan Riambau, presentamos esta nueva edición que incorpora un estudio introductorio de Martine Reid -catedrática de literatura francesa en la Universidad de Lille y experta en narrativa del siglo XIX-, así como el preámbulo y el epílogo originales, que Balzac prefirió suprimir en las últimas ediciones de la novela. «Más que en cualquier otro momento, el dinero domina las leyes, la política y las costumbres.» Roland Barthes dijo...«Balzac es la novela hecha hombre, es la novela llevada al último extremo posible. En cierto modo, es la novela definitiva.»

An Historical Mystery (The Gondreville Mystery)

by Honoré De Balzac

Characterized by amoral ruthlessness, the politics of A Murky Business would seem to bear out Balzac's questionable precept. <P> <P> Set earlier than most of Balzac's Comedie Humaine, the novel covers the years 1803-6, when Napolean was making himself first Consul and then Emperor. The inclusion of Napoleon himself, as well as figures like Talleyrand and Fouche, makes this a historical novel. But it is also an early example of the detective story, in which the sinister, implacable police agent, Corentin, stalks his way towards vengeance on his aristocractic enemies.

Las ilusiones perdidas

by Honoré De Balzac

Los mejores libros jamás escritos. Balzac recoge en esta obra maestra la crónica de toda una época, y compone una elegía de los perdidos sueños de juventud. Obra maestra de Balzac, Las ilusiones perdidas cuenta la historia de un joven de provincias con ambiciones artísticas que sueña con triunfar en París. La odisea de Lucien Rubempré desde la inocencia de su Angulema natal hasta el fango del fracaso constituye uno de los periplos narrativos más audaces, embelesadores e imponentes de la narrativa del siglo XIX. Crónica de toda una época, elegía y recuerdo de los perdidos sueños de juventud, esta novela, apoteosis y a la vez síntesis de La comedia humana, ha consolidado con el tiempo el vigor de su intimidante grandeza. La presente edición incluye un estudio introductorio de Jacques Noiray, contado entre los mayores entendidos en el realismo y el naturalismo franceses, así como tres apéndices sobre el proceso de escritura y la recepción de la novela. La versión al castellano del texto (y el apartado de notas que acompaña la obra) es fruto de José Ramón Monreal, uno de los mejores traductores contemporáneos de los clásicos franceses e italianos. Charles Baudelaire dijo...«Un visionario apasionado. Todos los personajes de Balzac están dotados con el entusiasmo por la vida que anima al propio autor.» «¿Qué era en aquel mundo de ambiciones? Un niño que corría tras los placeres y las satisfacciones de la vanidad, sacrificándolo todo a ellos.»

Letters of Two Brides

by Honoré De Balzac

By the French author, who, along with Flaubert, is generally regarded as a founding-father of realism in European fiction. His large output of works, collectively entitled The Human Comedy (La Comedie Humaine), consists of 95 finished works (stories, novels and essays) and 48 unfinished works. His stories are an attempt to comprehend and depict the realities of life in contemporary bourgeois France. They are placed in a variety of settings, with characters reappearing in multiple stories.

Louis Lambert

by Honoré De Balzac

Balzac wrote Louis Lambert during the summer of 1832 while he was staying with friends at the Château de Saché, and published three editions with three different titles. The novel contains a minimal plot, focusing mostly on the metaphysical ideas of its boy-genius protagonist and his only friend (eventually revealed to be Balzac himself). Although it is not a significant example of the realist style for which Balzac became famous, the novel provides insight into the author's own childhood. Specific details and events from the author's life - including punishment from teachers and social ostracism - suggest a fictionalized autobiography

A Man of Business

by Honoré De Balzac

Though a relatively short story, "A Man of Business" is an important component of Honore de Balzac's vast story cycle The Human Comedy, involving many of the recurring characters from the series and tying up a number of loose ends. <P> <P> As a fete thrown at the home of his mistress begins to wind down, Cardot invites the lingering merrymakers to settle around the table and begins telling a story about a clever debt-collection scheme.

An Old Maid

by Honoré De Balzac

La Vieille Fille (The Old Maid or An Old Maid) is a novel by the French writer Honoré de Balzac. Written in 1836, it was first published as a serial in La Presse, then published by Edmond Werdet in 1837 in Études de mœurs, in the section les Scènes de la vie de province. <P> <P> La Vieille Fille was republished in 1839 by éditions Charpentier, before being published alongside le Cabinet des Antiques in the isolated les Rivalités group within Scènes de la vie de province in la Comédie humaine, published in 1844 by édition Furne. <P> <P> The work was dedicated to Balzac's brother in law, an engineer in the corps royal des ponts et chaussées, Eugène Midy de la Greneraye Surville. Even so, Balzac offered its manuscript to comtesse Guidoboni-Visconti,[1] in 1844. <P> <P> This short and incisive novel stands out for the density of its story and its rapid succession of events. Balzac takes time to carefully describe the house of Mademoiselle Cormon, the old maid, in the city of Alençon, before entering directly into the heart of the matter. <P> <P> The portrait of Mademoiselle Cormon is one of the most successful in The Human Comedy. Balzac delivers in this novel one of his most nuanced analysis of a provincial town's social, political and financial affairs.

A Passion in the Desert

by Honoré De Balzac

The narrator and his woman friend are leaving a wild animal show. The woman wonders aloud how Mr. Martin, the animal tamer, is able to perform tricks with dangerous wild animals. The narrator, who has learned of Mr. Martin's secrets from a soldier, suggests that he can explain the mystery, but hesitates to do so verbally. He finally concedes, after much begging and solicitation, to write the solution out for her. <P> <P> The next day, he sends her a strange story about a soldier from Napoleon's invading army, who is fleeing from his Egyptian captors, searching for his regiment in the Egyptian desert. He stumbles into a cave to take refuge for the night. When a female panther returns to this cave after hunting, she snuggles up next to the sleeping soldier and prevents him from leaving as he had planned. Afraid that the panther will eventually kill him, the soldier thinks only of preempting its attack or of escaping. <P> <P> After spending several days together, the soldier and the panther develop a mutual, erotically charged, affection. The soldier, for example, shows his amorous feelings by referring to the panther as his mistress and by calling her "Darling"--the nickname of his first lover. The soldier also caresses the panther, at one point causing her tail to stand voluptuously erect. Quickly understanding the positive effect of these caresses on the panther's temperament, the soldier redoubles his efforts until he is sure that her passions are completely sated, leaving him safe in her presence. The soldier can be assured of his success because as he finishes his caressing, the panther returns her affection and lets loose an orgasmic sound described as one of those purrs by which cats express pleasure. <P> <P> Eventually, this imaginary love affair ends violently. The soldier plunges his dagger into the panther's neck when he suspects that she is about to devour him. The mortally wounded animal rolls on the ground, crying plaintively to the soldier; curiously, she shows no sign of hostility or vengeance. The soldier realizes he must have misinterpreted the panther's intentions, and he expresses his most profound sorrow.

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