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Two volumes of Colette's most beloved works, with a new Introduction by Judith Thurman.
Perhaps Colette's best-known work, Gigi is the story of a young girl being raised in a household more concerned with success and money than with the desires of the heart. But Gigi is uninterested in the dishonest society life she observes all around her and remains exasperatingly Gigi. The tale of Gigi's success in spite of her anxious family is Colette at her liveliest and most entertaining. Written during the same period as Gigi, Julie de Carneilhan, based on Colette's last years with her second husband, focuses on a contest of wills between Julie, an elegant woman of forty, and her ex-husband. Chance Acquaintances, a novella, involves an invalid wife, her philandering husband, and a music-hall dancer whose odd meeting at a French spa affects and indelibly marks each one of their lives.
About the Author
Born in 1873 in France, Colette was the author of many acclaimed novels noted for their intimate style. Colette titles from FSG include Gigi, Julie de Carneilhan, and Chance Acquaintances, The Complete Claudine, Chéri and The Last of Chéri, and The Complete Stories of Colette. She died in 1954.
Judith Thurmanis the author of Cleopatra’s Nose: 39 Varieties of Desire; Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller, winner of the National Book Award for Autobiography/Biography; and Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette. A staff writer at The New Yorker, she lives in New York City.
“The paradoxes of great literature are those of human nature, and Colette is nothing if not human . . . Accessible and elusive; greedy and austere; courageous and timid; subversive and complacent; scorchingly honest and sublimely mendacious; an inspired consoler and an existential pessimist--these are the qualities of the artist and the woman. Its is time to rediscover them.” —From the Introduction
“Colette is one of the glories of France.” —Michael Straight, The New Republic