Wednesday, April 11, 2007

A Sentimental Education - post II

There are moments when you start to think this is going to resemble Madame Bovary in the sense that she seemed out of control and doomed to follow a destructive course of action. But just as it looks like Frederic will destroy himself for the dream of loving Madame Arnoux he steps back from the brink and that leaves you wondering where he will go next.

Bullet points between pages 44 – 120

* Frederic starts hanging out at the gallery and with the friends of Arnoux in an attempt to get access to his wife and after discovering where she lives he attempts to invite himself round to get to know her better

* Meanwhile as he ploughs all of his energy and finances into chasing her he fails his law exams and starts to run into financial problems, which leads to him borrowing from his flatmate who has been sponging off him

* He comes across Arnoux with one of his mistresses and later on a planned trip to the country she hands Frederic a note to give to her lover but he mistakenly uses this to wrap some roses he hands to his wife and although nothing is said the reader understands what has happened even if Frederic doesn’t

* Frederic suddenly becomes determined to be worthy of her love and buckles down and passes his law exam and is dreaming of a bright future when he sets off home for a break with his mother – where he befriends a young girl who is a neighbour who you sense will reappear in the story because she clearly falls in love with Frederic

* But once home he is told that their income has gone and he ends up being trapped in the country and the months go by before he is told that he has become heir to his uncle’s fortune, which provides him with the chance to return to Paris and seek out Madame Arnoux

* But he discovers that she has had a second child and their fortunes have changed and he sees her as a middle class housewife and that love obsession appears to have ended

Has it or will it reignite? What next for the richer Frederic now he is back in Paris? More tomorrow…

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