Tuesday, January 30, 2007

'Gigi and The Cat'

by Colette

'Gigi' translated from the French by Roger Senhouse; 'La Chatte' by Antonia White

(Book #5 for 2007; 2nd book finished for the Classics Challenge)

Two stories of the politics of love. Gigi is being educated in the skills of the courtesan. However, when it comes to the question of Gaston Lachaille, very rich and very bored, Gigi does not want to obey the rules…
In ‘The Cat’, an exquisite strong-minded Russian Blue is struggling for mastery of Alain with his seductive fianc├ęe, Camille.

A fun glimpse at turn of the century Parisian culture in ‘Gigi’, and being a cat-person, ‘The Cat’ was quite amusing. Sometimes the translation seemed a little too literal (but I’m definitely no expert on French OR translation) so it seemed to me it would probably read more smoothly in the original French, which I have never read so this is all purely conjecture. But this being my first time to read anything by Colette, these 2 stories have made me curious to try the Claudine books, and someday when I’m feeling up to the challenge, perhaps in the original! Delightful reads!

I chuckle every time I read this part (don't worry the whole story isn't like this) from 'The Cat':

'Ah! There you are, Saha! I was looking for you. Why didn’t you appear at table tonight?’
‘Me-rrou-wa,’ answered the cat, ‘me-rrou-wa.’
‘What, me-rrou-wa? And why me-rrou-wa? Do you really mean it?’
‘Me-rrou-wa,’ insisted the cat, ‘me-rrou-wa.’
My Rating: 3.5/5


  1. I remember watching the movie Gigi with Leslie Caron and being entranced by it. I hope to read Cheri sometime soon--it is on my pile! I love the cover of your edition of Gigi by the way!

  2. Danielle - It's a Vintage Classics edition, 2003. I couldn't find a decent pic of it online so had to take my own as the cover that seems to be available now is different (although Amazon says it was published in 2001 so I'm confused!).

  3. I would love to look like the girl on the cover! Those girls from the twenties are so enchanting to me. I know, it's weird...


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