Sunday, 9 March 2008


Finished March 8
Le Bal / Snow in Autumn by Irene Nemirovsky, translated by Sandra Smith
These two novellas are strong stories,with most of the story within the protagonist's head. In Le Bal, a nouveau riche couple plan to hold their first ball, but don't include their young teen daughter in the invitations. As we look at things from young Antoinette's point of view as she exercises revenge for her mother's dismissive attitude, we see the desparation for acceptance of Madame Kampf, the relationship between the Kampf's and their social situation.
In the second story, we look at things from the point of view of a devoted servant, who has served the Russian aristocratic family for years, and emigrates with them to Paris. Tatiana has been with the family since the current master was a baby and she finds that changed finances of the family difficult as well as being homesick for the Russian winters.
These are both strong stories, very character driven, and one cannot help but wonder if they would have evolved into novels had Nemirovsky lived.

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