9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Always A Favourite,
This review is from: La Dame aux Camélias (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Disparaged by critics because this isn't literary enough this book has always been a sucess with the reading public, and joins those two other well known books that met with the same criticism, 'Trilby', and 'Dracula'. This was written when Alexandre Dumas fils was still quite young and was written quite quickly, he later made this into a play that was the theatrical phenomenom of the 19th Century, and after seeing the play this inspired Verdi to write the ever popular opera 'La Traviata'.
Using the real affair that Dumas had with Marie Duplessis he casts himself in this as the lover Armand. The tale is about Armand's great love for Marguerite (Marie), who he has become obsessed with. Of course their love affair will never be anything that will last as Marguerite is a coutesan and she also has consumption (nowadays known as tuberculosis, or more commonly TB). This is a quick read and is a real little page-turner that will having you wanting to finish it in one sitting. And yes there are flaws in this novel, but this is more than made up by the sheer exuberance of Dumas' writing. This translation is based on the 1852 edition which is the most commonly available in France.
If you want a great little read then get this and find out why it has entertained people throughout the world, and has never been out of print. David Coward who translated this also provides a very absorbing introduction that will tell you more about Marie Duplessis, and how her notoriety made this book such a bestseller in the beginning. If you enjoy this book why not get Manon Lescaut (Oxford World's Classics), which is named a few times throughout this novel.