Zola by Frederick Brown
A Life

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Synopsis

An definitive biography of the French writer draws on a new edition of Emile Zola's letters and examines the turmoil of a man caught between a mistress and wife, his literary relationships, and his novels in their cultural context.
 

About Frederick Brown

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Frederick Brown is professor of French language and literature at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He is the author of An Impersonation of Angels: A Biography of Jean Cocteau, Theater and Revolution, and translator of Paul Val& eacute;ry's Occasions.
 
Published May 1, 1995 by Farrar Straus & Giroux (T). 888 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Literature & Fiction, Travel. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Religion, money, and sex are the general subjects of these three arresting (previously untranslated) short stories by the French master of documentary realism and bloodcurdling melodrama.

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Kirkus Reviews

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Writing as much a history of late 19th century France as the life story of its most industrious novelist, Brown delivers a massive, old-fashioned biography of Zola.

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The New York Review of Books

Thirty years ago, when Angus Wilson published an excellent short book on Émile Zola, Lionel Trilling, who shared his enthusiasm for the Rougon-Macquart novels, wrote a review in which he took issue with Wilson’s prediction of a Zola revival.

May 13 1982 | Read Full Review of Zola: A Life

The New York Review of Books

My point was that Professor Brown, while dealing very thoroughly with the external details of Zola’s life, the plots of his novels, and the variety of critical response to him in his day, doesn’t at any point raise the question: Why should Zola’s life and work be of interest to us now?

May 23 1996 | Read Full Review of Zola: A Life

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