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Paintings in Proust: A Visual Companion to In Search of Lost Time
Eric Karpeles
In Search of Lost Time
Marcel Proust, C.K. Scott Moncrieff, Andreas Mayor, Terence Kilmartin, D.J. Enright, Richard Howard
Within a Budding Grove (In Search of Lost Time, #2)
Marcel Proust, C.K. Scott Moncrieff, Terence Kilmartin, D.J. Enright

Monsieur Proust's Library

Monsieur Proust's Library - Anka Muhlstein A wonderful, quick read about the role literature played in shaping Proust's life and his approach to the Recherche. Muhlstein's prose is readable; her use of quotes from the Recherche are generous and contextualized well so that someone who has yet to read it will not be lost in any way; and her quotations from Proust's work and letters are unfettered by academic jargon (she leaves most of these in footnotes which doesn't interfere with the flow of her main text—a wise choice in this sort of book).Here, we see how Proust was shaped by Racine's rejection of proper syntactical structure and also how Baudelaire piqued Proust's interest in issues of queerness and sexuality in literature; we learn of his unemphatic views of George Sand from whose book, curiously, the Narrator's mother in the Recherche reads to him in the beginning of the first volume; we see how British writers such as Hardy, Eliot, and especially Ruskin influenced Proust's approach to his novel; we get a good grasp of how influential Ruskin was on Proust after he had shelved his unfinished novel, Jean Santeuil, and found Ruskin to be "the gateway" to finding a workable structure for the Recherche both in terms of narrative and aesthetics; and we also meet the many writers and artists that populate Proust's massive novel, learning how their reading tastes reflect their moralities.Recommended to any fans of Proust, or those who are embarking on their first read of the Recherche Note: Muhlstein offers an introduction of the major characters from the novel in the beginning of her book. Some major plot points are given away in these character sketches, and, given that she contextualizes the quotes from the Recherche rather well throughout, I would advise first-time Proust readers to skip this so as to not ruin the novel for them.