Madame Bovary

by Gustave Flaubert

4.4/5

Flaubert was brought to trial by the French government on the grounds of this novel’s alleged immorality but narrowly escaped conviction. Madame Bovary remains a touchstone for literary discussions of provincial life and adultery as well as a summit of prose art, a pioneering work of realism that forever changed the way novels are written.

“Human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap crude rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars.”

Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary