Evangeline, Longfellow’s Epic Poem and its Remarkable French Translation

Evangeline book cover

In recent weeks, I’ve been making my way through The Story of French, a history of the French language. In a chapter devoted to French spoken in Canada, I was reminded of the history of the Acadian people. The authors made note of an epic poem, Evangeline by Henry Wadsworth…

Continue reading

Short Fiction from Steinbeck and Triolet, Popular 20th-Century Luminaries

Painting attributed to Vincent Van Gogh

Since getting serious about blogging last spring, I’ve started visiting other blogs to gain insights and inspiration. In doing so, I’ve discovered a vast and varied online community of people that typically write well about their passions and perspectives. One popular subgroup contains book enthusiasts that read scads of books…

Continue reading

Juliette Drouet; The Lonely Life of Hugo’s Devoted Mistress

Juliette Drouet, circa 1850

Two weeks ago, I wrote about a love letter that Victor Hugo wrote to his mistress, Juliette Drouet, shortly after fleeing France to live in exile. In that post, I remarked that over the course of their impressive 50-year relationship, Juliette penned roughly 20,000 letters to the storied author. It’s…

Continue reading

Valentine, a Killer Debut Novel, and Banned Books

Sunset in Big Bend National Park

Last week, I finished reading Valentine by Elizabeth Wetmore. I previously thought that American Dirt would be my favorite book of 2020 but unexpectedly, Valentine bumped it out of the running by a significant margin. What each of us finds praiseworthy about a book is entirely personal and while I…

Continue reading