My Posts on Balzac
The Black Sheep is very much what I have come to see as a typical Balzac novel centering on family difficulties brought on by money problems. I am about a third of the way toward reading through The Human Comedy, not really that big a project, many dedicated book bloggers could do it in under three months, and I see the biggest potential obstacle the seeming sameness of many of the works. But that is only a first thought, on second thought every work has interesting things and lets you time travel to France circa 1830 to 1845.
Wikepedia has a good plot summery so I will just mention a few things I really liked.
I enjoyed learning about how the Paris lottery worked, how lottery branches were often given out as kind of sinecures to deserving and politically in favor widows. There is a vicious scheme to poison all the dogs in a village and for some warped reason I quite liked that. There is a plot to starve 100s of mice and then releases them into an enemie's granary. I really like all the food descriptions and especially the very famous section devoted to making a quality omelet. Money, food, class, are all intimately tied together in Balzac's world.
This book is primarily for those reading the full comedy.
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I have now begun A Woman of Thirty.
"I find all this constant talk of money tiresome"