Read this... CLAS­SIC NOVEL

France - - Interview -

THÉRÈSE RAQUIN by Émile Zola

This early work from Émile Zola, first pub­lished in se­rial form in 1867, is a tale of adul­tery and mur­der in a work­ing-class Parisian neigh­bour­hood.

Set in a dingy hab­er­dash­ery shop near the Pont-neuf, the plot turns on an af­fair be­tween Thérèse and a friend of her hus­band’s. The adul­ter­ous pair drown the shop­keeper, but are haunted by vi­sions of the dead man.

Many de­nounced the work as ob­scene, with one critic de­scrib­ing it as ‘pu­trid’. For modern read­ers, the novel re­mains com­pelling thanks to its densely plot­ted nar­ra­tive and rich vo­cab­u­lary.

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