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In The Captive, Proust’s narrator describes living in his mother’s Paris apartment with his lover, Albertine, and subsequently falling out of love with her.
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Marcel Proust whiled away the first half of his life as a self-conscious aesthete and social climber. The second half he spent in the creation of the mighty roman-fleuve that is Remembrance of Things Past, memorializing his own dandyism and parvenu hijinks even as he revealed their essential hollowness. Proust begins, of course, at the beginning--with the earliest childhood perceptions and sorrows. Then, over several thousand pages, he retraces the course of his own adolescence and adulthood, democratically dividing his experiences among the narrator and a sprawling cast of characters. Who else has ever decanted life into such ornate, knowing, wrought-iron sentences? Who has subjected love to such merciless microscopy, discriminating between the tiniest variations of desire and self-delusion? Who else has produced a grief-stricken record of time's erosion that can also make you laugh for entire pages? The answer to all these questions is: nobody.From the Back Cover:
“As close to being a definitive English version of the great novel as we are likely to get...This new edition will serve to introduce new generations of readers to what Somerset Maugham rightly described as the greatest novel of our century.” –Allan Massie, Scotsman
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