2 March 2012
Fermina Marquez by Valery Larbaud
This strange romantic book is the product of a fantasy from a previous age.
The book is set at the turn of the century in a strict but liberal French school largely made up of international students. The boys become fixated on a South American girl who is staying in the area with her aunt and younger sister because her younger brother is at the school.
The protagonist sets out to win the girls affections through his intellectual prowess, but his intellectual arrogance loses her. While he holds himself in such high regard both she and reader sees his idiotic pomposity. Interwoven into the text is a comment on social class: the aristocratic girl and the lower middle class boy.
This book is probably worth reading once and then forgetting.
LARBAUD, Valery - Fermina Marquez, Quartet 1988