(((Read Book))) ☠ A Amante do Tenente Francês ↴ PDF eBook or Kindle ePUB free

I happen to come across two versions of this novel at the same time, this one, and one featuring Meryl Streep on the front cover I was always going to pick this one, as when I think of Meryl Streep The Deer Hunter immediately comes to mind, and the last thing I wanted when picking up this book each day and seeing her face was to think of Linda, the Vietnam War, and Christopher Walken s sad demise playing Russian roulette This is afterall a book about Victorian sexual repression on the south co I happen to come across two versions of this novel at the same time, this one, and one featuring Meryl Streep on the front cover I was always going to pick this one, as when I think of Meryl Streep The Deer Hunter immediately comes to mind, and the last thing I wanted when picking up this book each day and seeing her face was to think of Linda, the Vietnam War, and Christopher Walken s sad demise playing Russian roulette This is afterall a book about Victorian sexual repression on the south coast of England A woman stands at the end of a deserted quay and stares out to sea this was a strong image that came to John Fowles one morning back in 1966, he at first thought he saw the image as the representation of a myth, like many ancient stories of women left at home while their sea faring lovers travel off far and wide to war, or to fulfill some divine destiny Eventually, the woman in Fowles s vision had a name, Sarah Woodruff, thus The French Lieutenant s Woman started to take shape All this coming long after the haunting landscape and coastal areas of South Dorset were plaguing his thoughts This novel was inevitable And even though it does build some vivid images of the coastal landscape, the lasting impression I have is of two lovers stuck in separate emotional cul de sacs In the case of Miss Woodruff, abandoned by a French lieutenant, who as it happens, despite his name being in the title, plays almost no role in the novel s most important events Fowles isinterested in the burdening enigma of this fallen woman, the ostracized female viewedby her community as a source of sexual scandal and gossip Such women were well known to Victorian society, and might even appear in a tale or two, but rarely anythingthan a cardboard figure, a part in a moralizing tale about female weakness or the dangers of concupiscence Fowles wisely understood that such characters could be better created, and tell us things about nineteenth century life that the female protagonists of a Jane Austen or a William Thackeray would never truly reveal Fowles s utter fascination with Sarah Woodruff is shared equally by his leading male Mr Charles Smithson By the standards of Victorian England, Smithson is highly educated, worldly and enlightened He dabbles in science, and admires Charles Darwin And yet Smithson is still repressed, and completely out of touch with his own drives and unconscious desires, his notion of sexuality is still embedded in the moral and religious views of his time and place He wants to be the Gentleman with a respectable Victorian wife that would be Ernestina but Miss Woodruff, the Community s whore as she is known, can t escape the other self he fears that he will turn out to be.Sarah, who is clearly overrun with melancholia, refuses to play the role of a disgraced harlot, or even the victim She is drawn as a powerful woman, with an enclosed sexual appetite and inner life perhaps deeper than Smithson Fowles relies on the strong female to create the dramatic conflicts in this novel, and Sarah Woodruff is in the end one of the most memorable ladies I have encountered in fiction I was worried this would turn into just another dull romantic story, with characters you couldn t give a hoot for Thankfully it isn t It s also clever in the way the narrative is binary in nature, as the novel extends to provide two endings There is the conventional romance and it s deconstruction Considering it was first published in 1969 Fowles does a remarkable job of bringing Victorian England to life Everything is effectual in terms of his story, apart from one niggle, for some strange reason Fowles decides to cut into the story every now and then to remind us we are reading a work of fiction I think the term Metafiction probably applies Not sure why he thought best to do this But anyhow, I still dish out a strong four stars (((Read Book))) ✙ A Amante do Tenente Francês ⇖ The scene is the village of Lyme Regis on Dorset s Lyme Bay the largest bite from the underside of England s out stretched southwestern leg The major characters in the love intrigue triangle are Charles Smithson a gentleman of independent means vaguely scientific bent his fianc e, Ernestina Freeman, a pretty heiress daughter of a wealthy pompous dry goods merchant Sarah Woodruff, mysterious fascinatingdeserted after a brief affair with a French naval officer a short time before the story begins Obsessed with an irresistible fascination for the enigmatic Sarah, Charles is hurtled by a moment of consummated lust to the brink of the existential void Duty dictates that his engagement to Tina must be broken as he goes forth once again to seek the woman who has captured his Victorian soul gentleman s heart I think the greatest strength of this book is the utter uniqueness of it I don t think I ve ever read a book like it It is set in the Victorian year of 1867, and yet, the sensibility of the book is thoroughly grounded in the 1960s when it was written The language, metaphors, and focus of the book all come from the 1960s, and the actions of the characters are all given the lens of the highly visible author who is in fact one of the major characters of the book much in the style of Thackera I think the greatest strength of this book is the utter uniqueness of it I don t think I ve ever read a book like it It is set in the Victorian year of 1867, and yet, the sensibility of the book is thoroughly grounded in the 1960s when it was written The language, metaphors, and focus of the book all come from the 1960s, and the actions of the characters are all given the lens of the highly visible author who is in fact one of the major characters of the book much in the style of Thackeray, thoughpersonally done here, I think.The plot itself starts off as a flimsy Victorian melodrama, if one were to remove everything but the bare skeletons of the action from it boy meets girl, boy is engaged to girl, boy meets mysterious amazing girl, boy suffers crisis of love, moral dilemmas abound and then it develops into something else muchmodern with modern situations and dilemmas But it is how it is described that is the best p art of the book the focus is on the philosophies, the problems, the context of the era Fowles is deeply involved in trying to explain the actions of his characters with pages long meditations and research into the Victorian pysche, based on thinkers, papers, popular opinions and events of the era For example, the main character, Charles, is an amateur scientist and is a very strong Darwinist Fowles gets involved with class issues, capitalist society, poetry, the suffrage movement, feminism, and of course, the overarching focus of the book sexuality and its repression and unrepression It is here that comes my only real criticism of the book that at times the book is very dated to the 1960s in its utter obsession with sex and bohemia and fuck the system kind of rhetoric Which still rings with many today, so perhaps it isn t a problem for all I just found it sort of threw me out of the magic of the story when he tried to make his characters 1960s type heroes Another large and fascinating part of the book is that John Fowles allows us to see him at work He shows us the road not taken in statements like but mucheloquently put than this Well I could do this but that would betray the character but it is the formula where shall I go from here He lets the reader see behind the curtain, and see his process, lets them know that he recognizes what he is doing and what he could have done or should have done by convention He muses on what the character might want, or what he might want, and the various conventions that an author has at his disposal to most effectively display what he wants to convey I did not think that it threw me out of the book at all It made it eveninteresting, actually I d recommend this book for even people who don t usually like Victorian literature It has so modern a voice and discusses so many issues that we find of relevance today that perhaps your eyerolling can be kept to a minimum Like times, like manners And the times were puritanical The copulatory theme was repeated in various folio prints in gilt frames that hung between the curtained windows Already a loose haired girl in Camargo petticoats was serving the waiting gentlemen with Roederer s champagne In the background a much rouged butseemingly dressed lady of some fifty years of age cast a quiet eye over her clientele.John Fowles recreates the atmosphere of the Victorian era with an enviable thoroughness and Like times, like manners And the times were puritanical The copulatory theme was repeated in various folio prints in gilt frames that hung between the curtained windows Already a loose haired girl in Camargo petticoats was serving the waiting gentlemen with Roederer s champagne In the background a much rouged butseemingly dressed lady of some fifty years of age cast a quiet eye over her clientele.John Fowles recreates the atmosphere of the Victorian era with an enviable thoroughness and he never fails to be rich in intriguing details So The French Lieutenant s Woman rightfully remains one of the great milestones in literature.But there is also a kind of the warning against gullibility.We can sometimes recognize the looks of a century ago on a modern face but never those of a century to come On comparing the past with the present one inevitably corrupts the past with one s modern attitude I am infinitely strange to myselfJohn Fowles, The French Lieutenant s WomanThe reason I am drawn to literature, to art, to books considered to be classics, is to watch some middle aged, bearded man put on a pair of excuse the flamboyant analogy skates and suddenly pitch himself into the center of the ring and pull off a triple Salchow I love risk taking, experimental literature With The French Lieutenant s Woman , Fowles is boldly moving in a lot of directions at once pushing down fI am infinitely strange to myselfJohn Fowles, The French Lieutenant s WomanThe reason I am drawn to literature, to art, to books considered to be classics, is to watch some middle aged, bearded man put on a pair of excuse the flamboyant analogy skates and suddenly pitch himself into the center of the ring and pull off a triple Salchow I love risk taking, experimental literature With The French Lieutenant s Woman , Fowles is boldly moving in a lot of directions at once pushing down fourth walls Chapter 13 , jumping forward and backward in time, throwing himself into the path of the protagonist Charles and manages to control it all with a sharp elegance that is breathtaking He re creates a Victorian period novel and then deconstructs, dissects and parodies it while we watch He bends into it elements of Darwinian and Marxist thought two revolutionary Men who lived during this period, but are never displayed in the works of the Bront s, Hardy, Gaskell, Dickens or Trollope Doing so, he subverts both the age and the novel The French Lieutenant s Woman is a work of genius and a book that teased and challenged me on almost every page as I read it Because because, I do not know, I live among people the world tells me are kind, pious, Christian people And they seem to me crueller than the cruellest heathens, stupider than the stupidest animals The French Lieutenant s Woman is a baffling book It baffled me and I have no doubt it has left a trail of baffled readers behind it I wonder why no one has blurbed it with The French Lieutenant s Woman, proudly baffling people since 1969 yet It would be the most honest blurb in history fo Because because, I do not know, I live among people the world tells me are kind, pious, Christian people And they seem to me crueller than the cruellest heathens, stupider than the stupidest animals The French Lieutenant s Woman is a baffling book It baffled me and I have no doubt it has left a trail of baffled readers behind it I wonder why no one has blurbed it with The French Lieutenant s Woman, proudly baffling people since 1969 yet It would be the most honest blurb in history for sure Even stranger, I read it slowly, closely, eyes and ears and brain cells wide open, and yet I feel as if I have understood nothing, as if I haven t understood the book Which is just as possible, as we ve already established the book has long set itself the very specific goal of making you question your own wits And yet, it does it without malice It doesn t take pleasure in your stupidity, it doesn t gloat over it It doesn t even pity it, nor sympathize with it No It is simply indifferent to it You wouldn t feel as stupid if it showed to care, and then it would amuse no one.Because The French Lieutenant s Woman is a microcosm on its own It needs nothing and no one, and no matter how many times the God of this world will address you, reader, because the truth is that to it, to Him, you do not exist You can be an Ideal Reader at best, but please leave your self outside, thank you very much There s only so much space in here The rival you both share is myself In my mind, in believe, this novel will always be two the metafictional experiment and the human story There is no hierarchy between the two, and I will always be able to relive the book adopting, in turn, one of these two perspectives Both, if I feel like wearing my brains out.But at the end of the day, I find I don t care As long as I can relive it, and reread it, and think about it, I don t care if it so cruelly escapes me still I ll just take whatever little it is willing to give Here the sheer power of the Victorian novel, exploded revamped John Fowles invites you into an experiment he is conducting himself, stick with it you must the great puppeteer takes a story 100 years old, writes his characters and HIMSELF into the plot, right smack in the middle of Darwinian enlightenment and the empty floral vase that is Victorian Europe So much to witness in this enjoyable metaphysical romp Like, for instance, the satellite characters Yeah, I began a crush on Sam, our Here the sheer power of the Victorian novel, exploded revamped John Fowles invites you into an experiment he is conducting himself, stick with it you must the great puppeteer takes a story 100 years old, writes his characters and HIMSELF into the plot, right smack in the middle of Darwinian enlightenment and the empty floral vase that is Victorian Europe So much to witness in this enjoyable metaphysical romp Like, for instance, the satellite characters Yeah, I began a crush on Sam, our protagonist s manservant Why He looks at his master with eyes that take it all in, not in lust, but in victory His destiny to me seemedfree and beautiful than our agonizing malcontent I was cognizant of this before it manifested on the page There are breaks in tradition galore Yes, the French Lieutenant s woman is the main character no, she is not followed with that straight fidelity one gives their literary objects of affection Where else can you find historical anecdotes and footnotes so resplendent in their use but in metalit There is a deep mourning for the loss of individuality felt by the characters that s the true main theme the tension between lust and renunciation 216 Ah, the naked female wrist The work is invigorating, suffused by the modern master s touch He breaks the armor plates set up by the Wuthering Heights of yesteryear, by the demonic texts of Hawthorne the book seeks an ending like the reader seeks it There is parallelism in the experimen, in the discovery The enjoyable journey seems to be set for us both, the reader and the writer alike Once You Show Me Your Magic s Secrets, The Magic is Gone 3.5 rounded up to 4 You should know first off that I m no fan of novels in which the author inserts him herself by making crafty little comments that serve to remind me he made the damn thing up and or to entertain the author by allowing her to toy with the conventions of storytelling I come to a novel to read a story that speaks truth and to lose myself in another world, and I hope the novel is a really good one that provokes me to me le Once You Show Me Your Magic s Secrets, The Magic is Gone 3.5 rounded up to 4 You should know first off that I m no fan of novels in which the author inserts him herself by making crafty little comments that serve to remind me he made the damn thing up and or to entertain the author by allowing her to toy with the conventions of storytelling I come to a novel to read a story that speaks truth and to lose myself in another world, and I hope the novel is a really good one that provokes me to me learn something about myself and or the human condition To accomplish this call me old fashioned I need to be able to suspend my disbelief in the author s fantasies While I am intrigued by how writers create stories, I find it hard to see truth in fiction wherein the writer makes contemporary comments and otherwise reminds me that he made the whole thing up I can only think of one novel in which I enjoyed this type of telling Immortality by Milan Kundera On the other hand, I didn t like his The Book of Laughter and Forgetting because he overly cogitates on his thought processes in creating the related stories as he is in the process of telling them.To me, many novels of this ilk amount to a form of intellectual dick measuring exercises, whereby one author gets to show the others how smart, cute and clever he can be I try to come up with a good analogy, but the best I can do at the moment is saying it s like going to a Vegas magic show knowing, obviously, it is not really magic, but enjoying it because the magician tricks my eyes into believing the impossible only to have the Houdini show me how he is deceiving me as he performs the magicHere, the narrator tells a century old story of a Victorian love affair in 1867 Charles Smithson, an up and comer of mainly middle class means, is engaged to Ernestina, a well to do innocent vacuous young lady Soon, he swoons over Sarah Woodruff, a beautiful and poor woman who was recently jilted by her lover, a French lieutenant, and whom the townspeople treat as a whore outcast The story was intriguing as far as it went as fiction until Fowles began playing around and ruining the truth of the story for me Fowles gives the reader three different endings I am not sure how I can fully spoil the ending unless I tell you.the three distinct endings Yet, maybe the fact of three endings persuades you to read it since the chances are good that you will like at least one of three I thoroughly enjoyed this book The story wasn t what I expected it to be at all I expected the story to be similar to Madame Bovary and the writing style of the author to beVictorian, seeing as the story was set in that era, but it s actually quite modern This book made me an instant fan of John Fowles He writes very intelligently and although he plays the role of narrator in the 19th Century, his perception is that of a 20th Century writer, which makes the book eveninteresting I thoroughly enjoyed this book The story wasn t what I expected it to be at all I expected the story to be similar to Madame Bovary and the writing style of the author to beVictorian, seeing as the story was set in that era, but it s actually quite modern This book made me an instant fan of John Fowles He writes very intelligently and although he plays the role of narrator in the 19th Century, his perception is that of a 20th Century writer, which makes the book eveninteresting He also includes his opinions on 19th Century society which I believe enrich the story All writers create worlds that do not exist so there should be no qualms that this novel recreates a world, a very Victorian world, a world populated with its own people, all now long dead, that had its own writers and chroniclers, all also now very much dead, that had its own ideas and tendencies and fears and preferences and prejudices, all of which we can no longer now really hold as our own, should there Or was the gap too long for you to remember that the subject of that sentence was so All writers create worlds that do not exist so there should be no qualms that this novel recreates a world, a very Victorian world, a world populated with its own people, all now long dead, that had its own writers and chroniclers, all also now very much dead, that had its own ideas and tendencies and fears and preferences and prejudices, all of which we can no longer now really hold as our own, should there Or was the gap too long for you to remember that the subject of that sentence was some vague and generalised qualms Authors are Gods if they choose they can write about things that quite simply they could never know the first thing about how it feels to be that woman standing over there in her billowing cape blowing out against the wind, what it means to be dead and yet to not expect judgement, what the rush of power is like in having just created an entire universe with all time and all space and all actions that shall ever take place therein laid bare and translucent before one Although,frequently, authors tend to speculate on that woman, any woman, as if it was she that was lying bare and translucent before them, muchthat than they ever do in contemplating the hidden mysteries of universes yet uncreated But, even so, don t in the least confuse that for modesty on their part The inevitability of female desire for the all too male creations of these male fantasists, even if only realised in a spurting, premature ejaculation is not expected to be followed by an apology on his part, I m sorry, I had hoped and then trailed off but rather by her saying, Thank you, my dearest, for the best eighteen seconds of my life And sometimes the world, the real world of living, breathing free agents that we imagine ourselves to inhabit, stands aghast or in awe or terrified by the worlds these minor demigods call forth into existence Look , world says, here is a man, a novelist, a writer of fictions, and he has summoned before us the very essence of Victorian England and look, here are parts of France, Italy and the United States all brought equally back to life he has made them evenreal than was possible for the previous writers of fiction who lived in those times, he shows us this world as it must be seen, by our very modern eyes Here the world stands an age eviscerated, no, rather an age animated once again, only it is better this time for it has been brought back Frankenstein like for our benefit by one of our own To me, the chapter of this book that best explains what is going on here besides the melodrama which must sustain the interest of the readers less concerned with the philosophical discussions that proceeds apace, at once by sleight of hand, or then tentatively hidden, just sideways from the page, or suddenly bold as brass and perhaps a little too upfront is Chapter 13 A quick read of that chapter will not tell you whether or not you will like to read this book It is too different from what the rest of the text appears to be and so will offer little help there in your decisions but it is what the book is about , if, that is, the book is about anything Perhaps I should ask questions although, I hope you don t expect such a catechism to help you What is the position of the author when he intrudes into the world of the novel he is writing I ll stick with he here after a chat I had with my daughter yesterday about precisely this concern with pronouns, but also because in this case the author is all too very decidedly a he How much, even as the omnipotent creator of this little world, does he really know, or is he allowed to know, or does he choose to know To what extent is the author free in his own creation On this last point I can illustrate with one of my favourite instances in the book It is the line describing one of the characters being discovered after her long absence she is with a child and the author would dearly love to have her found pushing a pram see, the image leaps off the page even if you haven t read the book but he can t because prams were not invented for another ten years Such are the authors scruples don t for a moment think I ve misplaced that apostrophe fellow authors.Oh, excellent, we think, we readers or should I only speak for myself Verisimilitude we say, if we are familiar with that word but we think something very like it even if we are not Nothing better than to have a pretend Victorian England that confines itself to the constraints of that other, that very real Victorian England, to that time, to the facts of that other imagined world we call history And so, given this verisimilitude, just how was she with the child if she was not pushing a pram The negative image is all that remains, I m afraid In my memory the fictional character still pushes the nonexistent, the not yet invented, pram, despite all authorial warnings against my forming just such an image Although, clearly that was his intent all along.There are things that you will be told about this book before you read it that will not prove to be true Firstly, you will be told that the book has two endings there are, in fact, three endings The first of the three is probably the ending that most closely reflects the ending we all choose in living out our own lives or is that just me being rather cruel about you here It is, after all, the dreariest ending of the three the one even the author can only bring himself to rush through as if with a bad taste in his mouth So just how cruel is it that I am being towards you and your dreadfully predictable life My implying that you follow the same well trodden path that convention sets out before you, and in making that endlessly dull path appear again before you simply in my mentioning that particular ending, that generally unmentioned ending of this book It is, after all, the ending most readers choose to ignore when they say this book has only two endings there must be a reason for that A not very nice reason, I suspect.But I have no right to mock you for the grey, one foot at a time, blandness of your trudging walk along the gravel stoned pathway of your existence I am just as constrained and just as restricted as you The mere fact I sit here rattling these chains may well draw attention to them, but like your chains, the ones you may prefer to hide or that you struggle to keep silent, the ones that nevertheless pinch against your wrists and nip the bony flesh of your ankles, these my chains here are still firmly in place, still just as locked tight and whether I choose for them to make a noise in my rattling them hardly matters one way or the other Drawing attention to bonds in no way loosens them, in no way frees me.Secondly, you will be told that much of this novel is a playing out of very modern concerns within a vividly imagined Victorian England I m not so sure this is the case If there is one motif in fiction that I particularly like to trace my fingers along in times of idle contemplation it is the idea that we all want to live within the fairytale of love, but that love repeatedly refuses to be confined within the very fairytale it itself promises Rather, the greatest efforts meagre as even these inevitably prove to be, truth be told that we exert in the name of love never amount to what we expected them to It is as if we would turn to the object of our love and say Look, all of this I have done, this entire universe I have created, and all this stands testament to my adoration of you Can t you see, can t you tell what this, what all this has cost me And there it is our gaze turns and returns yet again and always back to ourselves Even as we exult that other name, that name that was the word that issued forth to create the entire universe, she becomes someone else, something else, a cipher we have used to hide our very own image in her name, Pygmalion like A thing of mirrors and reflections For writers are truly Gods.This book is taught in high schools to 18 year olds god pity them and I m nearly certain hours and hours of discussion is spent discussing the motivation of this French Lieutenant s woman, why and if she lead the protagonist astray but this really is not a book about her at all Her motivations, her desires, her very being is of secondary interest at best This is a book about a man who just wants to have some control, who wants to make a world where he is the hero of his own story, not the lackey, not the person indebted to others, not below his own wife, not caught Is that man called Charles or John, I can t remember which or did I ever know And he sees a woman who he thinks he understands, for he understands that she has somehow, despite the impossibility of such a choice, chosen to be herself, so he decides, outside of conventions, that she might be someone who just might be able to show him a way out But there is no way out, really We do not have time machines we live decidedly within our own time we do not get to be ahead of our time, whatever that could possible mean, not even when we are characters created in a world future to the one we are asked to live within by someone gifted by time s passing and with that most singular power of hindsight, we still can only live out our own lives and we live them in the here and now, whatever here and now means or whenever that means, perhaps with ourselves barely a single thread in a tapestry all too great for us to even take in It is our substance, even as it bumps up against the world, that hides from us how essentially ephemeral we are unless, unless our shadow somehow stands black against white in some text somewhere, almost real, almost life like Otherwise, we remain, at best, the major character in the lonely narrative that forever runs foregrounded in our own minds, if nowhere else.So, which ending did I prefer Oh, but they are all the same we live, we die and all paths taken lead inevitably to the grave A muchinteresting question is is this fiction Or rather, should we really care if this is fiction Or perhaps even, should we care if this is true Or, to ask the same question one last time, to what extent is the made up eventrue than the lived At least, that is what I think this book is about