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Monday, November 28, 2022

In Search of Lost Time

A drama/documentary of the great 20th-century French writer, starring Ralph Fiennes and Felicity Kendal. Based on the book of the same name by Alain de Botton, who also stars.


Legend - the beautiful elder sister of truth - has it that Ernest Hemingway wrote the shortest story ever written: "For Sale: Baby Shoes. Never Worn." Six gut-punching words! Compare that to the 1,267,069 words in Proust's masterpiece "À la recherche du temps perdu" (In Search of Lost Time), double those in "War and Peace".

If you've never heard of oceanic Proust's book, let alone read it - at three hundred words a minute, it would take the average reader about 45 hours and 27 minutes to read the entire novel, excluding meal and toilet breaks - then Alain de Botton's charming little book (it's a mere 200 pages!) "How Proust Changed My Life" is the perfect introduction.

To quote from Alain de Botton's little book, "Whatever the merits of Proust's work, even a fervent admirer would be hard pressed to deny one of its awkward features: length. As Proust's brother, Robert, put it, 'The sad thing is that people have to be very ill or have broken a leg in order to have the opportunity to read 'In Search of Lost Time'."


Read Alain de Botton's charming book online here


It's as much a witty and entertaining synopsis and commentary on Proust's masterpiece as it is a self-help book by giving the reader a new and richer way of looking at the world, and I've read it more than once (I've also read every other book by Alain de Botton more than once). By contrast, I haven't found the time yet to read "In Search of Time"!



An interesting chap on YouTube, Benjamin McEvoy, introduced me to Proust's book as a graphic novel - click here. What a great idea!



I'm quite tempted but I'm still in search of the money to buy them.

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