Jean de Florette and Manon of the Springs (Paperback)
North Point Press, 9780865473126, 448pp.
Publication Date: March 1, 1988
In Jean de Florette and Manon of the Springs, Marcel Pagnol (called by Andre Malraux "one of the great writers of our generation" and by Jean Renoir "the leading film artist of his age") achieve the fullest and most satisfying expression of a story that haunted him for years, a Provencal legend of vengeance exacted by a mysterious sheperdess. Pagnol brings to his treatment of this powerful, moving story his dramatist's sense of place, ambience, and character and his keen understanding of the Provencal countryside and its people. Rich with twists and ramifications, Jean de Florette and Manon of the Springs sets an idealistic city man against two secretive and deceitful Provencal country men in a superbly realized story of a struggle for life, of crime and punishment, of betrayal and revenge, and of judgment and forgiveness. In this edition, illustrated with images from the acclaimed film adaptation by Claude Berri, North Point presents Pagnol's enduring story in W.E. van Heyningen's exact and sensitive translation.
Biblical in its cadences, epic in its sweep to destiny, and old fashioned in development of character and plot, this saga charts the destruction of a Provencal family.