[[ BOOKS ]] ⚣ Bel-Ami Author Guy de Maupassant – Thomashillier.co.uk


10 thoughts on “Bel-Ami

  1. says:

    Guy de Maupassant was responsible for a couple of items named Bel Ami One was his very successful 1885 novel and the other was his small sailing yacht.Here is what the latter looked like, from a Sale advertisement.Advertisement for the sale of Guy de Maupassant s Yacht Bel Ami litho b w photo In Maupassant s mind both the novel and the boat must have had a great deal in common, for we must remember that le bateau in French is of a masculine genre I also see a link in the great deal of pleasure that Maupassant must have had sailing in his boat and in my enjoyment when flowing through his textual Bel Ami.The story in this book is after all one of a voyage of transformation It traces the adventures of the scoundrel Georges Duroy as he surfs the seas of Parisian society He is a real fripon , which is, unsurprisingly, a name often given to vessels incidentally, Fripon in Spanish translates as Brib n , which is the name of the sailboat of His Royal Majesty, Juan Carlos I, King of Spain And here is the royal Bribon.Georges Duroy is a lucky man To begin with, he is beautiful, charming, engaging and. bewitching When he also polishes his gear he reaches such a point of elegance that he does not recognize himself when he sees his reflection in the mirror The novel is the account of how, as if he were a boat, he transforms himself from a provincial raft into a seductive canoe and eventually into a magnificent yacht I picture the something as alluring as this In this account of navigation we witness the exploration of Duroy s remarkable personality who is always on the look out for new opportunities or new ports as he moves through the social, political and economic mesh of Paris in the late nineteenth century His elegant gliding is possible thanks to his ability to detect from where the wind blows and let himself be carried by that impulse So, even if he starts out of a standing of poverty and misery, he recognizes the buoy that is his friend, M Forestier, and succeeds in keeping afloat.And from this timely impulse from the friend Duroy advances and steers on towards success, thanks to his wafting allure A great part of his journey is accompanied by the crew of women in his life as they lay out the course for him For amongst his abilities we hear him sing mesmerizing chants to the mermaids of the Parisian salons while he also skirts the shores formed by the cabarets where he can find banks of other females For not all women play the same role One offers a harbour of love Another provides a piquant tour along the reservoir of the Folies Bergere And a very secure anchor is provided by a third, who appropriately lives in Rue Fontaine, until it is time for him to unmoor and head out for a richer heiress and final landing pier.But not all the crossing is made thanks to the dames Journalism also offers rich waters for further discoveries and, as he embarks in this new career, we follow him to its zenith For during the Third Republic newspapers acquired a new power and depth in which there was a lot to fish Duroy recognized this clearly As hidden finance deals blended with journalism into dense and murky seas, he succeeds in breaking the waves and casting his net in these new profundities and pull out fantastic treasures.As he also learns how to cruise through the currents of public opinion, he begins to scan the coasts of Northwestern Africa, following the wake that the political and economic interests of French Foreign Policy were leaving behind Duroy proved always ready to catch major opportunities in these colonial maneuverings when France interfered with the interests of Morocco, Algiers and Tunisia.But for the entirety of this voyage, capital is needed if one is not to drift into dangerous currents And since just floating will not take you anywhere, and just as Duroy is beginning to drown in his own debts he manages to emerge because he starts swimming in other people s money As his stroke improves he eventually triumphs as he creams the foam of society s fortunes and riches And as he has set his sails his itinerary eventually takes him out into the open ocean of high politics By then Duroy has earned all his stripes and elevated his name to that of Baron du Roy de Cantel He is then than ready to make direct headway towards the not too distant coast of the French Parliament, which standing as a beacon in the horizon, is where he plans to cast anchor, finally.And if Duroy s story seems like a miracle, we have to remember the recurring analogy established in the novel between our maritime hero and the often mentioned, and fictitious, painting depicting J sus marchant sur les flots.And if I ever could succeed in life and managed to get myself a Yacht like this one I would also call it BEL AMI.


  2. says:

    There are many women who would give way to a passing whim, a sudden violent desire or an amorous fancy if they weren t afraid that their brief moment of happiness would end in a dreadful scandal and bitter tears Georges Duroy comes from the provinces of France to Paris with the determination to make something of himself He finds a job making a pittance, but fortunately he runs into an old friend from the army named Charles Forestier Even though Duroy has no real writing experience, Forestier decides to get him hired on at La Vie Francaise as a journalist He wants Duroy to write about some of his experiences in the army, but the cursed white page that plagues even the most experienced writers is consuming his words before he can even dip his pen to paper Forestier sends Duroy to his wife Madeleine She will get him sorted It doesn t take long for Duroy to realize who in the Forestier family is doing most of the writing As he starts to mix in the circles surrounding the newspaper, he starts to see the potential for not only continuing to better his position but also the plethora of opportunities to seduce other men s wives He is a handsome rake He had a fund of small talk, a pleasant voice, a caressing glance and his moustache was irresistible Crisp and curly, it curved charmingly over his lip, fair with auburn tints, slightly paler where it bristled at the ends It isn t long before the women, and even the men, are referring to him as Bel Ami.As he gains confidence, he also becomes bolder His first conquest is Madame Clotilde de Marelle I ve never seen such pretty earrings as yours, Madame de Marelle She turned to him with a smile It s an idea I had to fasten a diamond like that, simply on the end of a wire They look just like dew, don t they Alarmed at his temerity and terrified of saying something silly, he murmured It s charmingbut the ear must take some of the credit, too Her ample bosom first catches his eye, but of course, only a low class lout would compliment a woman s breasts By showing an interest in her earrings, he unknowingly hits upon something of which she is proud, her creativity As you will see when you read this novel, Duroy frequently gets luckier than he deserves At the same time, I can t help rooting for him even as he takes on characteristics that are beneath a man on the rise Forestier is very sick with tuberculosis The disease is wasting him away A young man, only in his late twenties, he will not only leave a higher position open at the newspaper, but he will also leave a young, beautiful, ambitious woman a widow Both the job and the widow are of interest to Duroy To him, she represents the pinnacle of success, but she will only prove to be a stepping stone for a man as ambitious as he is The Forestier death scene is particularly poignant because of his deathbed terror of the unknown, which even envelopes Madeleine and Duroy, who are devotedly attending his last moments, despite already scheming about a life after Forestier When Guy De Maupassant was writing this novel in the 1880s, he already knew he was living under a death sentence Syphilis was eroding his health at an alarming rate When he wrote Forestier s last moments, I couldn t help thinking that he was recording his own fears and projecting his last curtain call upon this man who was dying too young First things first, Madeleine changes his name He is now Duroy de Cantel or D de Cantel There are reasons why actors and actresses change their names, not only to be someone else, someone larger in even their own minds when they are acting, but to also have a memorable name that will easily trip off the tongue of those who hear it Duroy is becoming an accomplished actor in the drama of his own life He has come a long way from the first squalid rooms he used in Paris His wallpaper, grey with a blue floral pattern, had as many stains as flowers, ancient, dubious looking stains that could have been squashed insects or oil, greasy finger marks from hair cream or dirty soap suds from the wash basin It all reeked of poverty and degradation, the poverty of Parisian furnished lodgings I know it isn t possible for everyone to experience poverty, but for me, while trying to pay for college and at times walking around with just a few slender dimes in my pocket, the prospect of missing meals certainly honed my appreciation for what being successful really means Though being successful takes on different meanings for different people, my vision of what a successful life is has certainly changed in the last few years The road to success is thus largely paved by wily mediocrity but, fortunately, as a counterbalance and a sort of poetic justice, Maupassant takes pains to underline the basic futility of ambition We see this philosophy in how Duray, excuse me, D de Cantel adjusts to his rising prosperity He is besotted by bitter envy of the triumphs of others to the point that he can t enjoy the vaulted position he has achieved Achieved may be too strong a word.He does still recognize who he is A smart, low, open carriage came by drawn at a brisk trot by two slim greys with flowing manes and tails, driven by a small blonde young woman, a well known high class tart, with two grooms sitting behind her Duroy stopped and felt like waving and applauding this woman whose success had been won on her back and who was boldly flaunting her luxury by taking her drive at the same time as these aristocratic hypocrites I wonder, if we looked in on Duroy twenty years in the future, if he would still see the woman as an act of defiance to be celebrated, or will he be so steeped in the conventions of his new class that he will see her as someone to be vilified for her impertinence The women are so well drawn in this book I find myself admiring them than the men They are competent, intelligent, and in many cases, use Duroy as much as he uses them I especially admire Madeleine Forestier, who, through her subtle astute suggestions, guides Duroy to better opportunities, and even suggests women he should strategically get to know better She has no illusions about how either one of them are ever going to rise to a place of comfort The spectre of death, the dissatisfaction with success, the unseemliness of unquenchable ambition, and the hypocrisy of the aristocracy all make for a scathing, enjoyable romp through the dark alcoves, the boudoirs, and the secluded settees of Paris, as seeking fingers grope for the flesh beneath the silk If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit also have a Facebook blogger page at


  3. says:

    826 Bel Ami The History of a Scoundrel, Guy de MaupassantBel Ami is the second novel by French author Guy de Maupassant, published in 1885 an English translation titled Bel Ami, or, The History of a Scoundrel A Novel first appeared in 1903 The story chronicles journalist Georges Duroy s corrupt rise to power from a poor ex NCO to one of the most successful men in Paris, most of which he achieves by manipulating a series of powerful, intelligent, and wealthy women.The novel is set in Paris in the upper middle class environment of the leading journalists of the newspaper La Vie Fran aise and their friends It tells the story of Georges Duroy, who has spent three years in military service in Algeria After working for six months as a clerk in Paris, an encounter with his former comrade, Forestier, enables him to start a career as a journalist From a reporter of minor events and soft news, he gradually climbs his way up to chief editor Duroy initially owes his success to Forestier s wife, Madeleine, who helps him write his first articles and, when he later starts writing lead articles, she adds an edge and poignancy to them At the same time, she uses her connections among leading politicians to provide him with behind the scenes information which allows him to become actively involved in politics Duroy is also introduced to many politicians in Madame Forestier s drawing room Duroy becomes the lover of Forestiers friend Mme de Marelle, another influential woman Duroy later tries to seduce Madeleine Forestier to get even with her husband, but she repulses Duroy s sexual advances and offers that they become true friends without ulterior motives 2006 1347 434 19 1384 440 9644530616 .


  4. says:

    Guy de Maupassant s 1885 portrayal of a scoundrel of the highest order, is set in Paris and was written with great style and not a little humour It really brings this period to life, and though this isn t edge of the seat stuff, the pages turn just as quickly following the exploits of George Duroy journalist reputedly serial adulterer certainly and general rake, who ll stop at nothing to attain wealth, power, and recognition Even though this was written in 1885, it seems that nothing much changes, and characters like George s are still alive and kicking


  5. says:

    For a novel published in 1885 and set in the Paris of that period, this novel has a remarkably modern feel It s about sleazy journalism, corrupt politicians, sex, money and power And through it all is the Bel Ami of the title Georges Duroy, who uses his liaisons with rich and or powerful women to achieve the wealth and social position he craves Bel Ami is the nickname given to him by the daughter of a mistress It means handsome or beautiful friend , but the nickname, like almost everything else about Georges, is deceptive As handsome as he is, there s nothing in the least bit friendly about Georges I love so much about this book I love the straightforward, accessible language, the believable dialogue and the descriptions of Paris life in 1885 I love the use of humour, such as in the duelling scene I love the poignancy of some of the scenes for example view spoiler the death of a secondary character, Forrestier, which is masterfully written hide spoiler


  6. says:

    A while back, I happened to read some of De Maupassant s darkly humorous short stories from the Parisian affair collection and found them a pure delight He no doubt had a talent of capturing the bourgeousie society and predominantly focusing on relationships between men and women, exploring the nature of the human character, thumbs up here Bel Ami although a solid enough read just didn t leave me with that same feeling of his shorter work Zola, Balzac and Flaubert I find far engaging when it comes to expansive novels, and even though this is far from being a huge novel it lacked something to keep me fully absorbed, it didn t help that right from the off I pretty much knew Georges Duroy Bel Ami was a character that was not going to win me over, as it seems he was following a sinful path that had only one destination Greed.The story itself is a basic one The power to succeed in journalism regardless of who gets hurt along the way with the focus on how certain characters react to certain situations, De Maupassant does have a strength for writing of the bond between people and does that well here, but nothing close to as good as in A Parisian Affair., the panoramic descriptions of Paris s right bank societywas handled really well, making this characteristic my highlight of the whole novel.Nothing is ever enough for Duroy, the son of peasant tavern owners in Normandy all too quickly forgets his past His lucky break is also quickly forgotten and a growing sense of deserving money and influence starts to grow in his corrupted heart Duroy appears completely oblivious to the pain caused to others, with both wife and mistress coming off second best to his logic And the he climbs social ladders the less of a good natured person he becomes, and does not see love in anyway shape or form It s a fear, a fear of failure that drives Duroy forward, De Maupassant builds up the picture slowly, and this does build character development, which goes down well, I was far interested in wife mistress aspects of the story rather than Bel Ami himself It starts slowly as Duroy takes his first tentative steps into society, but by the end as the issues become complex the reader is still able to navigate around the world of newspaper, foreign ministers and sexual escapades, to come to the same conclusions as before That Duroy is dangerous and unlikeable.The cutthroat world of journalism has changed a hell of a lot since this publication, but human behaviour has not, which will see Bel Ami continue to be classed as a timeless piece of writing.But he is just short of being in the same league as Zola or Balzac 3.5 5


  7. says:

    A meaty, exciting, insightful novel Maupassant is so skilled with structure and is clearly champing at the bit to depict the ins and outs of 1880 s Parisian culture the extremely spoilery introduction is worth reading after you read the book to learn about the narrative parallels between Bel Ami and the author Bel Ami s a great character he s sort of totally loathsome and not particularly brilliant, and yet you can t help but thrill at his talent for manipulation and constant drive It s also fun, oddly enough, to read a book about a genuinely handsome, alluring man The women in the novel don t fall short either each of the three leads has her moment to shine and Madame Forestier, in particular, is as skillful and likable and MODERN a female character that I can remember from this period in writing G d.M is known as a short story writer and there are scenes here the visit to Bel Ami s coarse childhood home the remarkable dueling scene, which is a spectacular depiction of the way terror elides time the creeping death of a friend the depression of an elderly poet the first meeting with a new lover that stand alone quite well But my favorite scene of all is a party toward the end of the book, when all the characters share the stage for the first time as they whirl around each other at the height of the society You realize with a thrill that you know so many of them intimately, that despite the close alignment with the book s lead, you understand an entire tableau and look at them with affection That this is one hell of a novel.Oh, and the ending is just absolutely a knockout That last sentence sticks the landing.


  8. says:

    Bel Ami is timeless Against the background of journalism and social dinners, this fable without having the form, but already the background persuades us that everything is possible I almost said that together, everything becomes possible humor In the France of the late nineteenth, Duroy starts from nothing, but arrives at everything He chooses journalism almost by default, he conquers the heart of women almost unwittingly, he seeks the bottom impossible without really knowing it With a cynicism at bay, Maupassant paints the society around him with vitriol How can we not see in each new generation of readers a calquable vision of the realities of our time Where is the real happiness Should success be achieved at all costs Bel Ami or how to answer crucial questions, closer to society, while avoiding the long tiresome descriptions of some realistic authors of the nineteenth To always meditate once


  9. says:

    This is a really good novel and I totally loved it I mean I LOVED it.When you come across fiction that it this good you must stand up and clap I am clapping OK now, Chrissie, explain why you loved it.I loved it because I was laughing from start to finish I loved it because it has a message that is oh so true The message being that those who succeed, those who attain power, and position and money and fame very often do it by the least of admirable methods This dire message is nevertheless achieved in a humorous fashion No lectures are delivered This is the way life is, but rather than moaning and complaining we laugh This is achieved by the author throwing together a group of characters NONE of which are admirable so they all deserve each other and whatever happens to them You cannot feel sorry for the loosers they all chose to take part in this fashionable game for sex and power and money and fame If they loose it is their own fault That is how I see it The sex is tantalizing, alluring, seductive No depictions of crude behavior Hints are given that attract rather than repulse.OK, what about the narration by John McDonough of this Recorded Books audiobook The voice of this narrator is that of an elderly man In the beginning I thought why have they chosen such a voice, given that the main character, journalist Georges Duroy, is a young man Still it was wonderful He is telling us a story of the goings on in Paris in the latter half of the 1800s, so in fact this elderly voice works stupendously The French pronunciation is spot on Yeah, even when the women ball and shriek, it all works Oh the shrieking, the family eruptions and pissed off men I was laughing and laughing and laughing One thing the translation from French to English was marvelous THIS is a story that is easy to follow, even if it was first published in 1885 The language used made you feel you were in Paris and it made you fully aware that what happened then could just as easily happen today It is a wonderful translation I do not know who the translator was I loved the lines, I forgot to tell you how wonderfully Guy de Maupassant depicts people and places and events, such as marriages and duels and charity fencing competitions So the translation was perfect too I am sure Guy de Maupassant would be happy to hear the story being told in this manner The translation makes this book feel relevant even today We are delivered a piece of art that speaks to readers than a century after it was written This is a book that holds year after year after year, and that is what makes it a true classic Why is it is still relevant today Because unfortunately people do NOT change.


  10. says:

    Just who is Bel Ami bel ami beautiful handsome friend is Georges Duroy, ostensibly a love rat, a man intent on procuring fortune and social status by way of the women in his life rather than by usual means A man of humble parentage, he s an ex soldier with nothing to live on but his desire to do better for himself trading on his charm, his wit, good looks and sex appeal Never satisfied with what he has, Duroy furthers his status, employment and bank balance via his wife and his mistresses His employment as a journalist is procured by meeting an old army buddy Bel Ami will soon step into that same man s shoes in ways than one The story is back dropped by events leading to France s colonization of North Africa.Although published in 1885, Bel Ami is still relevant today the parallels between our society and late nineteenth century are part of the appeal Another surprise is considering it s male author and the book s hero , Bel Ami is amazingly devoid of raunchy sex scenes No sweaty in depth sex depictions here, De Maupassant rather neatly tells you all he needs to in a single sentence I kept going back over lines convinced I had missed something My rusty schoolgirl French is not up to the task so I read the English translation Does the novel lose something when not read in it s native tongue I ll never know I do know Du Maupassant has a wonderful way of telling a tale, a gift with dialogue and a rich descriptive talent You may just read it so you can add French Authors to your credit but you won t regret it Basically, Bel Ami is mild enough to pass on to your granny, the book that is, not the man, while remaining relevant enough for everyone else from fifteen year old upwards to ponder as well I thoroughly enjoyed this novel Recommended Reading 4.75


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Bel-Ami Guy De Maupassant S Scandalous Tale Of An Opportunistic Young Man Corrupted By The Allure Of Power, Bel Ami Is Translated With An Introduction By Douglas Parmee In Penguin Classics Young, Attractive And Very Ambitious, George Duroy, Known To His Admirers As Bel Ami, Is Offered A Job As A Journalist On La Vie Francaise And Soon Makes A Great Success Of His New Career But He Also Comes Face To Face With The Realities Of The Corrupt Society In Which He Lives The Sleazy Colleagues, The Manipulative Mistresses, And Wily Financiers And Swiftly Learns To Become An Arch Seducer, Blackmailer And Social Climber In A World Where Love Is Only A Means To An End Written When Maupassant Was At The Height Of His Powers, Bel Ami Is A Novel Of Great Frankness And Cynicism, But It Is Also Infused With The Sheer Joy Of Life Depicting The Scenes And Characters Of Paris In The Belle Epoque With Wit, Sensitivity, And Humanity Douglas Parmee S Translation Captures All The Vigour And Vitality Of Maupassant S Novel His Introduction Explores The Similarities Between Bel Ami And Maupassant Himself And Demonstrates The Skill With Which The Author Depicts His Large Cast Of Characters And The French Society Of The Third Republic.

  • Paperback
  • 416 pages
  • Bel-Ami
  • Guy de Maupassant
  • English
  • 15 October 2018
  • 9780140443158

About the Author: Guy de Maupassant

Henri Ren Albert Guy de Maupassant was a popular 19th century French writer He is one of the fathers of the modern short story A protege of Flaubert, Maupassant s short stories are characterized by their economy of style and their efficient effortless d nouement He also wrote six short novels A number of his stories often denote the futility of war and the innocent civilians who get crushed i