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The Message by Honoré de Balzac

Stay in Touch Sign up. We are experiencing technical difficulties. Please try again later. The story starts strong with justification for its telling: I have always longed to tell a simple and true story, which should strike terror into two young lovers, and drive them to take refuge each in the other's heart, as two children cling together at the sight of a snake by a woodside.

At the risk of spoiling my story and of being taken for a coxcomb, I state my intention at the outset. I myself played a part in this almost commonplace tragedy; so if it fails to interest you, the failure will be in part my own fault, in part owing to historical veracity. Plenty of things in real life are superlatively uninteresting; so that it is one-half of art to select from realities those which contain possibilities of poetry. But while the beginning had me hooked, it proved itself uninteresting after a few paragraphs though perhaps less so than "plenty of [other] things in real life" , tiring in both its themes and style.

The Message

Free download available at Project Gutenberg. View all 3 comments.

The Conscript, by Honore de Balzac

Firme e forte em meus planos de ler a CH mas preciso de algo mais significativo em sua grandiosa obra. A short story of two gentlemen travelling on a coach. They both realize they have mistresses. When one gentleman is close to death, due to a freak accident, the other is given a mission to deliver a letter to his forbidden love.

Simple, free-flowing writing and storytelling, providing good insight into midth century French society, class and romantic entanglements.

Selected Short Stories

May 31, Steve Schoenbeck rated it really liked it. Le Message c'est l'histoire de deux jeunes hommes qui font connaissance lors d'un voyage en diligence. En discutant ensemble, ils se rendent compte qu'ils ont plusieurs points en commun. Balzac Yahoo Reading Group.


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A very short story indeed, it took less than 10 minutes to read. It begins with the narrator sharing a perch on top of a carriage with another young man; as the journey progresses they share stories of their lovers, and how they find older women so attractive. An accident happens, and the young man is asked by his dying companion to retrieve the lady's love letters from his home and break the news to her gently. And he does so, without too much angst caused by the husband's presence.

Es ist nur eine kleine Novelle, aber er schafft es, einen Einblick in die damalige bessere Gesellschaft zu geben, der in diesem Fall pikant und nichtsdestotrotz vielsagend ist. May 31, Fazackerly Toast rated it liked it Shelves: Henry rated it it was ok May 04, Emouemi rated it it was ok May 14, Xavier rated it liked it Oct 08, Camila Nogueira rated it it was ok Jan 28, Nani rated it it was amazing Jun 07, Wendy Bertsch rated it really liked it Sep 30, Vints rated it it was ok May 23, Samuel Regueira rated it liked it Jul 22, Nina rated it really liked it Apr 03, Mateusz Jaros rated it liked it Jul 17, Rosy Retrospection rated it liked it Dec 19, Cheer rated it it was ok Dec 12, Joao Baptista rated it it was ok Apr 22, Martin rated it really liked it May 24, Ingrit Tavares rated it really liked it Feb 20, Brett rated it liked it Aug 24, Reham rated it liked it Nov 21,

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