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The Belly of Paris

The Belly of Paris

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Written by Emile ZolaAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Emile Zola
Translated by Mark KurlanskyAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Mark Kurlansky

  • Format: Trade Paperback, 368 pages
  • ¬†
  • Publisher: Modern Library
  • On Sale: May 12, 2009
  • Price: $16.00
  • ISBN: 978-0-8129-7422-5 (0-8129-7422-0)
Also available as an eBook.
about this book

Part of Emile Zola’s multigenerational Rougon-Macquart saga, The Belly of Paris is the story of Florent Quenu, a wrongly accused man who escapes imprisonment on Devil’s Island. Returning to his native Paris, Florent finds a city he barely recognizes, with its working classes displaced to make way for broad boulevards and bourgeois flats. Living with his brother’s family in the newly rebuilt Les Halles market, Florent is soon caught up in a dangerous maelstrom of food and politics. Amid intrigue among the market’s sellers–the fishmonger, the charcutière, the fruit girl, and the cheese vendor–and the glorious culinary bounty of their labors, we see the dramatic difference between “fat and thin” (the rich and the poor) and how the widening gulf between them strains a city to the breaking point.

Translated and with an Introduction by the celebrated historian and food writer Mark Kurlansky, The Belly of Paris offers fascinating perspectives on the French capital during the Second Empire–and, of course, tantalizing descriptions of its sumptuous repasts.