One of the Best Books Ever Written!
This book is magnificent! How can one describe it's impact? It is never slow or boring even the introduction of the characters proceed at a thorough but rapid rate although they are fully developed, sometimes just by the description of their actions.
"My French Whore, A Love Story" is to me a book that is a mixture of many things yet it is unique, original and stands totally on it's own. One can be reminded of the following motion pictures after reading it, but, again, the book copies none of them.
The motion pictures that one (I) could identify (in no particular order after reading this book are:
1. The Inspector General (Gogol's version w/Danny Kaye)
2. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
3. Twelfth Night (Shakespeare)
4. Love Story (Segal)
5. Paths of Glory (Cobb w/ Kirk Douglas)
6. The Scarlet Pimpernel (Leslie Howard version)
7. The Producers and Young Frankenstein (of course the Gene Wilder versions)
There could be more motion picture reminders depending on the particular reader and
their film knowledge but to me the above stood out. It must be STRESSED, however, that the book neither rips off or copies any of these movies right down to not even quoting a single line from them.
Singular words that come to mind to describe this book (again in no particular order and depending on when I am re-reading it) are:
4. Comforting (in a weird sort of way)
The book is TOTALLY engrossing and I could not put it down once I started it. I have read it now FIVE times, each time not putting it down until I finished it. Each time it was a wonderful read and I will be re-reading it again and again in the immediate and long term future. Every time I read it I was totally caught up in the story line(even though I knew how it would end after the first reading) and caught up in the plot and characters from one sentence to the next throughout the entire book. Gene Wilder's style made the book flow from word to word, sentence to sentence and paragraph to paragraph.
While this book is one of the best, and probably the best book, I have ever read (currently no book comes close-although I don't call the Bible a book) I would love to see
it on the stage or made into a movie. The book, as noted previously, is funny yet serious
at the same time whilst never becoming boring or repetitious. It is also very amusing throughout with a sad yet strangely uplifting ending.
"My French Whore-A Love Story" is clearly the work of a literary genius and the book's very complimentary cover blurbs by Mel Brooks and Publisher's Weekly were "spot" on, though, due to their limited space, did not in my opinion do Mr. Wilder full justice.
This is a book to add to one's library not only for the joy of owning a great piece of literature but to read again and again and again.