Read In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust Free Online
Book Title: In Search of Lost Time|
The author of the book: Marcel Proust
Edition: Modern Library
Date of issue: February 6th 2012
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 412 KB
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Reader ratings: 7.9
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When you read Proust, and learn to appreciate his extraordinary, dreamy, hypnotic, truly inimitable style (this review is a mere shadow on the wall of a Platonic cave), which succeeds in making the syntax of language, usually as invisible as air, into a tangible element, so that, like literary yogis, we may feel, for the first time, how enjoyable the simple activity of reading, like breathing, can be; and discover the delights of sentences which took the author days to construct and us an hour to read, unpacking layers of subordinate clauses to discover, nestling inside their crisp folds, a simile as unexpected and delicious as a Swiss chocolate rabbit, wearing a yellow marzipan waistcoat and carrying an edible rake, found in its cocoon of tissue paper under a lilac bush during a childhood Easter egg hunt; or, steaming across the calm waters of a limpid grammatical lake in the capable hands of Captain Marcel and his crew, confident that they know the route from generations of experience, and will in due time, exactly on schedule, arrive at the main verb, pointing us tourists to it with justifiable, understated pride; then you will gradually come to identify with the alchemical author, spending twenty years sitting, propped up by pillows, in his velvet dressing-gown, transmuting the lead of his accumulated experience into gold, surrounded by galley proofs which he constantly rereads and revises, pasting in a parenthesis in the middle of this sentence, an apposition in that, so that the papers are gradually festooned, like bizarre Christmas decorations, with loops and curlicues of afterthoughts; and waiting for life, his unfaithful mistress, to leave him, simultaneously knowing that it is inevitable, and also that she will never do so, at least as long as this, the greatest and strangest of all novels, is still not quite finished...
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Read information about the authorFrench novelist, best known for his 3000 page masterpiece À la recherche du temps perdu (Remembrance of Things Past or In Search of Lost Time), a pseudo-autobiographical novel told mostly in a stream-of-consciousness style. Born in the first year of the Third Republic, the young Marcel, like his narrator, was a delicate child from a bourgeois family. He was active in Parisian high society during the 80s and 90s, welcomed in the most fashionable and exclusive salons of his day. However, his position there was also one of an outsider, due to his Jewishness and homosexuality. Towards the end of 1890s Proust began to withdraw more and more from society, and although he was never entirely reclusive, as is sometimes made out, he lapsed more completely into his lifelong tendency to sleep during the day and work at night. He was also plagued with severe asthma, which had troubled him intermittently since childhood, and a terror of his own death, especially in case it should come before his novel had been completed. The first volume, after some difficulty finding a publisher, came out in 1913, and Proust continued to work with an almost inhuman dedication on his masterpiece right up until his death in 1922, at the age of 51.
Today he is widely recognised as one of the greatest authors of the 20th Century, and À la recherche du temps perdu as one of the most dazzling and significant works of literature to be written in modern times.
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