29 April 2016

Book Review: Cautionary Tales by Emmanuelle de Maupassant

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Here's my review as it appears on Goodreads.

Cautionary Tales: Voices from the EdgesCautionary Tales: Voices from the Edges by Emmanuelle de Maupassant
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If these stories were a movie, you would find that the old woman telling the tales is either one of the young, buxom protagonist of one of the stories, or one of the spirits that interjects throughout the narrative. And she would likely unwrap her babushka from her head and frighten you with some hideous demon feature. This isn’t a spoiler in any way, simply the image that came into my head as I was reading.

These are fairy tales that will keep you up at night, partly out of fear as you wonder if the spirits are watching your every action, partly due to the erotic voyeurism of watching others make mistakes. The reader follows the spirits as they show us the errors of many human ways. Lust and greed lead people down many paths and some people pay for their actions as a way to teach others not to follow them.

Cautionary Tales is quite different from de Maupassant’s novel, The Gentlemen’s Club, but equally rich in language that draws the reader into a frightening, lustful, and delightful experience.

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