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Fromont and Risler   By: (1840-1897)

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Fromont and Risler by Alphonse Daudet is a compelling novel that delves into the complex dynamics of friendship, love, and ambition. Set in the bustling city of Paris during the late 19th century, the story follows the lives of two friends, Frédéric Fromont and Risler, as they navigate the challenges of marriage, business, and betrayal.

Daudet's narrative skills shine through in his vivid descriptions and detailed character development. The author skillfully portrays the stark contrast between the two main characters - Frédéric, a charming and ambitious young man who is heir to a successful business, and Risler, an honest and loyal individual who is content working diligently for his friend.

The story takes an interesting turn as Risler marries Frédéric's cousin, Sidonie Chèbe, who is cunning and manipulative. Sidonie's greed and ambition easily overshadow her love for Risler, leading her to engage in a clandestine affair with Frédéric. Daudet beautifully showcases the complex emotions and moral dilemmas faced by the characters, highlighting the destructive power of betrayal and deceit in relationships.

Through Fromont and Risler, Daudet examines the fragility of trust and the consequences of placing ambition above friendship and loyalty. As the story unravels, the characters are tested in their resolve, forcing them all to confront their true natures and face the repercussions of their actions.

One of the strengths of this novel lies in Daudet's ability to create a rich and vibrant ensemble cast, each with their own motivations and flaws. From the enigmatic Sidonie, who expertly plays multiple roles to further her own agenda, to the naive but endearing Risler, the characters feel incredibly real and relatable, making the reader emotionally invested in their journeys.

In terms of style, Daudet's writing is elegant and lyrical, bringing the bustling streets of Paris and the intricate emotions of the characters to life. The author's attention to detail in describing the setting and the characters' innermost thoughts adds depth and richness to the narrative.

Fromont and Risler is a captivating read that explores the complexities of human relationships, the consequences of betrayal, and the pursuit of personal ambition. Daudet's masterful storytelling and astute character development make this novel a timeless piece of literature that will resonate with readers long after they turn the final page.

First Page:



With a Preface by LECONTE DE LISLE, of the French Academy


Nominally Daudet, with the Goncourts and Zola, formed a trio representing Naturalism in fiction. He adopted the watchwords of that school, and by private friendship, no less than by a common profession of faith, was one of them. But the students of the future, while recognizing an obvious affinity between the other two, may be puzzled to find Daudet's name conjoined with theirs.

Decidedly, Daudet belonged to the Realistic School. But, above all, he was an impressionist. All that can be observed the individual picture, scene, character Daudet will render with wonderful accuracy, and all his novels, especially those written after 1870, show an increasing firmness of touch, limpidity of style, and wise simplicity in the use of the sources of pathetic emotion, such as befit the cautious Naturalist. Daudet wrote stories, but he had to be listened to. Feverish as his method of writing was true to his Southern character he took endless pains to write well, revising every manuscript three times over from beginning to end. He wrote from the very midst of the human comedy; and it is from this that he seems at times to have caught the bodily warmth and the taste of the tears and the very ring of the laughter of men and women... Continue reading book >>

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