EBOOK or EPUB (La neige était sale) by Georges Simenon
Georges Simenon é 0 FREE READCorporate OccupationFrom time to time Georges Simenon has been either accused of collaboration or praised for his The Merovingian Mythos and the Mystery of Rennes-Le-Chateau resistance during the German occupation of France in WWII Dirty Snow suggests that a substantial middle ground which might be called exploitative participation exists and could just be closer to the truth Thisegion is inhabited by many particularly those of the permanent underclass who perceive occupation as another not terribly significant fact of life to be dealt with by the usual means crime Or precisely purposeless criminality For the protagonist Frank military occupation simply means increased opportunity Murder in particular is less problematic than during peacetime and one simply yearns to test one s mettle in such a permissive atmosphere In fact all Je Taime A La Folie relationships are worth less to Frank than they might have been otherwise with the naive girl who lives across the landing with the newlyecruited prostitutes in his mother s brothel with his felonious pals All are expendableBut aside from the momentary thrill of conuest none of Frank s actions are meant to advance any objective He already lives well with no financial concerns and no Je T'aime A La Folie real worry about punishment He s on the way up in the underworld society which itself is entirely nihilistic Everyone has something on everyone else so that everyone on closer view has something to feel guilty about In other words the onlyeason you don t betray other people is for fear of being betrayed by them The skill therefore is to be the first to betrayOn second or third thought could it be that most of us occupy this middle ground of exploitative participation in the corporate society which itself acts as an occupational force in our midst Getting on for the sake of getting on Acting for the thrill of eputational advance Murder and other illegalities may be off limits but betrayal in the corporate world comes just as easily as it does for Frank in occupied territory Frank may merely be the apotheosis of the good corporate citizen 1 14 perhaps M sieur could I have a word pleaseYes what is it We notice that you ecently finished Blonde Hair, Blue Eyes reading Dirty Snow Would you care to answer a few uestions about itYes I would like that I think it might be useful to me than you can imagine Well first we have seen that you initially gave it 4 stars then changed it to 2 Why was that I think my initialating was a Emperor Akbars Khamsa Nizami result of not wanting to appear dim witted But after a considerable amount of thought Iealized that I couldn t give it 4 stars based on the way I Goodnight Princess rate books And what is that Myatings basically are indications of the experience I had One Last Goodbye reading a book and what I thought I was able to take away from that experience They do not attempt to pass any kind of judgment on the worth uality whatever of the book at least not usually Based on this Iealized that the proper Arrival (Mind Warriors, rating for the book was no than 2 So you didn t enjoyeading this bookCertainly not That s not to say that I found it totally uninteresting Why didn t you enjoy itWell what s to enjoy I suppose if one were a huge fan of noir one could find the experience of Diamond Willow reading this book very satisfying But my guess is that this example of noir might be very extreme Wouldn t it be the case that in most noir novels there is at least one main character that we canelate to on some level I didn t find that here We ll ask the uestions if you please So you couldn t elate to Frank in any wayLook I m a person who likes to think that he has uite a capability of empathizing with people But that is only possible when you can discern something about the person s life attitudes beliefs desires that you either have direct experience with yourself or can you think imagine what having such experience would be like For me I can t find anything like that in Frank Frankly ho ho if I knew a PERSON LIKE FRANK I WOULD STAY FAR AWAY FROM like Frank I would stay far away from and if I couldn t do that I would probably try to figure out some way of eliminating him from my environment like you eliminate poison ivy from your backyard You did admit that you found something interesting in the book didn t youYes The story line itself was certainly interesting enough to keep me eading at least in the sense that I did continue to wonder what the outcome of this New Year in Manhattan repellant chain of events would be I also thought the tale went up a notch in the third part of the book whichecalled to me impressions I still had from eading Kafka s Trial long ago It s sometimes said that this novel is a magnificent tale about what it is like for a city to be occupied by a foreign army Any thoughts on thatThere is something to that much ings very true in that House of Exile regard But many different stories could have been told that would not only include all those keen observations about foreign occupation but would at the same time not be so unremittingly unpleasant toead So you eally have very little in the way of positive commentsSPOILER ALERT this paragraph onlyview spoilerAs I said I don t take myself to be a literary critic so I m not judging the book one way or another as literature Though having made that admission I do need to add that I found the ending of the book the SissyHolst episode totally unbelievable To imagine a young woman having the feelings that Sissy has in the story is impossible unless one assumes that she is as dead to life as Frank himself
is in which case they deserve each other Of course Holst himself is eually unbelievablein which case they deserve each other Of course Holst himself is eually unbelievable this context It strikes me as a deus ex machina which enables Simenon to end the tale as he wants to hide spoiler The writer Georges Simenon was a Belgian I thought he was French author who was incredibly prolific in creating noir crime novels and other books that delved into the darkness of the human psyche He is considered by some as the father of the noir genre I nominated this book for a small eading group because of having Winters End read two outstanding novels by Graeme Macrae Burnet who said his writing was influenced by havingead tons of Simenon books growing up While just getting started with Dirty Snow I noticed that the character names were Germanic sounding than French The book is set during WWII while German forces occupied various parts of Europe In one of Burnet s novels he has the story take place in a French Swiss border town so I wondered if the French or so I thought Simenon also set his stories on the border Nope This one is set in Belgium and now that a friend kindly let me know that this is Simenon s home country things have clicked for me a full three days after finishingIn our group discussion I pondered if writing all of those crime stories over the years is what led Simenon to go further into the human psyche with his other novels essentially looking at the why behind certain crimes or certain mindsets A hopeless or abusive upbringing can indeed mold monsters I like looking behind the curtain too and for our group book discussion I dug up some general info on author Simenon It s true that he was living in Nazi occupied France during the war but he was also later accused of having conspired with the Germans He was eventually cleared of all the chargesIn this story two men are accused of doing separate acts neither has done Like Simenon was not guilty neither were they The book was published in 1948 and I cannot hel. Aos dezenove anos Frank Friedmaier vive na França sob a ocupação nazista no início dos anos 1940 Todos lutam para sobreviver Ele mora na casa da mãe um prostíbulo ue serve aos oficiais alemães mas busca um sentido para sua vida Friedmaier é um cafetão um bandido um ladrão Assim ue o livro começa ele acaba de cometer. P but see some of the author s emotions and sense of irony in this particular story Secondly the The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter reason that Simenon ineal life was accused of collaborating with the enemy was that he wrote books or screenplays that were adopted into films by the Nazis I do not know whether he wrote them specifically for the occupying forces or if they had been written before In this fictional story the main character and his mother are provided significant amounts of food by the Germans while their neighbors are nearly starving Obviously there is jealousy and disdain The character in the story lives with his mother who operates a brothel that caters to German officers So did Simenon Who wrote stories that were turned into films by the Nazis feel like he had prostitute himself Did they give him extra food and supplies in exchange for his literary talents No idea Whether that s allmy invention or something legitimate I don t know But it deepened the Bust: How the Courts Have Exposed the Rotten Heart of the Irish Economy reading experience for meDirty Snow was my first taste of Simenon s works and iteminded me of The Stranger by Camus The anti hero Frank was just too emotionless for me to care about until the closing chapter despite the author s ability to convey in Frank a 19 year old s desperate longing for a fatherI will try other works of Simenon but am left feeling dead eyed and empty for Kiss of the Alpha right now Maybe that was the writer s intent Ladies and gentlemen watch carefully Here s Frank a young punk who lives in his mother s brothel in occupied France He lies drinks steals does black market business with the German officers commits murder just for fun Yes feel free to touch him he fucks his mother s girls every night while treating them like shit and is also trying to seduce the 16 year old virgin who lives across the hallAre you still watching you may check that there is nothing up my sleeve and now using only sparse descriptive prose I will transform him into a universal symbol of human suffering andedemption that will emind you of L Etranger King Lear and Crime and Punishment but still has a character all its ownSir I understand your scepticism You don t think it s possible but ABRACADABRA The audience stare in disbelief A lone voice from the back asks plaintively Bloody hell how did Simenon do that Dirty Snow a withering parade of apathy it languishes and eventually disintegrates in a desolate gray landscape of inscrutable uncertainty A perfect summer beach ead Eighteen year old Frank the fiercely vacant antihero is a callous arrogant thug He commits increasingly depraved acts determined to prove that he s an emotionless killer who doesn t give a shit about anything This desire of course How to Be a Victorian reveals that he isn t uite as indifferent as he likes to think he is It takes him a while to figure this out By the time he does it s too late Or wasn t it alwaysAll in all a seductively bleak tightly written descent into existential malaise emptiness and despair Frank had done what he wanted to do He hadounded the cape He had looked at the other side He hadn t seen what he expected to see Who cared In his afterword to this novel William T Vollmann opines As technology and corporatism impel us and to treat one another like things loyalty and decency approach irrelevance except between intimates and sometimes even then Dirty Snow is certainly a book that compels a Fat Chance: My Life in Ups, Downs and Crisp Sandwiches reader to feel much the same as WTV does about what happens to the human soul in the trash compactor crush of Money and Civilization but there are many books that tell this story So whyead this oneSimenon s particular genius is giving us a protagonist loathsome yet Auschwitz relatable and portrayed with a subtlety that belies his horrific actions Frank is like theest of us his need to count to be known ecognized isn t anything new Simenon puts us in the mind of a creature that by the
END OF THE STORY WE FINDof the story we find discomfort in just how human a monster can be The snow falls where it wants when it wants whether mankind wishes it or no In the end all we can do is make it filthy In the world of novel writing Georges Simenon was the Mozart of the novel He uit school for good as a teenager never participated in a writing workshop never enrolled in a writing program and never attended a writing class With his innate ear for language and dialogue eye for detail and feel for storytelling all he needed Was Four Dozen Freshly Sharpened four dozen freshly sharpened lined up on his desk and a Do Not Disturb sign to hang on his door And presto a first ate novel written at fever pitch in two weeks Goodness what some writers wouldn t give to have a fraction of his talent After ten years of writing dime store potboilers Simenon decided to get serious and started writing his Detective Maigret novels A few years after pumping out detective novels again Simenon decided to become even serious and thus began writing what he sometimes characterized as Getting to Manana romans durs that is straight novels or hard novels meaning hard on theeader PD James termed these Simenon third phase books as dark novels Personally I like the sound of all three together straight hard and dark And let me tell you folks Dirty Snow is exactly that straight as in straight psychological study a mile away from detective fiction hard as in very hard on the Good Food: Low-fat Feasts: Triple-tested Recipes (BBC Good Food) reader and dark as in the deepecesses of the human psyche Simenon s novels are nearly always strict point of view narratives where Cyrano de Bergerac readers see people and unfolding events only as the main character sees them With Dirty Snow the novel s main character is a burly eighteen year old by the name of Frank Friedmaier a despicable lout if there ever was one The novel isn t written in first person but it s a close cousin in each and every scene it s as if we are standing directly behind Frank gazing over his brawny swinish shoulder Judging this novel set in an unnamed European city under World War II type foreign military occupation as hard on theeader would be understatement anyone opening the book s pages had better be prepared for a story that s tough to swallow actually on further Sky is Falling reflection make that extremely tough to swallow At various points in the narrative Dirty Snoweminded me of Anthony Burgess A Clockwork Orange andom youth violence Yevgeny Zamyatin s We eerie dystopia Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn s Gulag Archipelago state sponsored fear and Franz Kafka s The Trial nightmarish interrogations Likewise Albert Camus 1945 novel The Stranger written three year prior to Simenon s in the sense Dirty Snow is coated with existential alienation as snow in the novel is coated with dirt and also is structurally similar to The Stranger in that it is divided into two distinct parts Frank living on the outside and Frank shut up on the inside My strong sense is if Georges Simenon didn t write all those potboilers and Detective Maigret novels and only
WROTE A FEW OF HIS ROMANS DURS THEN DIRTYa few of his omans durs then Dirty would be studied and discussed alongside such classics of existentialism as The Stranger and Jean Paul Sartre s Nausea Now I can see why George Simenon thought himself worthy of the Nobel Prize and One Week With Her (Ex) Stepbrother resented publishers and literati who labeled him a hack catering to the clamoring detective fiction lovingabbleIn the first chapter we learn Frank links sex with violence and feels inferior to other slightly older men who have committed murders thus Frank plans to murde. Seu primeiro assassinato Pela escuridão de um inverno interminável o protagonista se afundará na abjeção até ue não haja mais saída Este livro já foi descrito como um dos Memoirs of a Dipper rarosomances nascidos sob a França ocupada ue vão direto ao ponto Atrás das grades depois de ser descoberto pelos oficiais Frank vive os dias. R his first man a fat officer in the army of occupation known as the Eunuch who is drinking in a bar murder him with a knife that very evening as something akin to a ite of passage We also come to understand Frank has an odd Death of a Salaryman relationship with an older man his neighbor Gerhardt Holst a man we might infer is a father figure for Frank Frank waits in the snow of the back alley knife at theeady waiting for the Eunuch to walk out of the bar Just at that moment Holst walks down the alley Holst would never see him pressed up against the wall but Frank coughs to make sure Holst knows he is there Frank The Russo-Japanese War 1904-1905 reflects Of course it wasn t because of Holst that he was going to kill the Eunuch That was already decided It was just that at that moment his act had made no sense It had been almost a joke a childish prank What was it he had said Like losing his virginity Let usecall how in traditional societies the Le grand livre de la chasse rite of passage from boyhood to manhood does not happen in isolation but is a community event witnessed by older men Perhaps Frank yearns for such a communal passageThe plot uickly thickens I highlyecommended this penetrating existential novel published by New York Review Books since there is a most insightful ten page Afterward written by William T Vollmann Afterward Longstreet Highroad Guide to the Vermont Mountains rather than Introduction is ideal in this case under the assumption one has alreadyead Dirty Snow Vollmann critiues the novel in detail without My Fair Mistress risking giving anything away At one point Vollmann observes Here is Simenon s genius Frank wants to beecognized He wants to be known He scarcely knows himself or anything else worth knowing But if he can somehow stand Blood Forest revealed to the gaze of the Other then maybe he will achieve some sort ofealization Don t you and I want to be Doctor Who: Ghost Light real than we are And wouldn t it be convenient if somebody else could help us get there I hope your literary appetite has been whetted Again highlyecommendedGeorges Simenon The first cup of coffee Awake at 600 he prepares it himself and drinks it installed at his machine He gives himself until 900 to write a whole chapter He works only by electric light This was my first Simenon book though certainly it won t be the last Dirty Snow is a stark noir novel set during the German occupation of France in WW II though the exact location and time period is never mentioned The anti hero Frank is a budding hoodlum who lives in his mother s brothel He spends his evenings in sleazy bars and associates with other small time hoods though he doesn t دیوان رودکی really have any close friends He also samples his mother s whores when he takes a notion though he doesn t seem to get much pleasure from sex or anything else During the course of this novel Frank commits three heinous acts two of them for no apparenteason and another for financial gain What sets Frank apart from the average noir On the Social Life of Postsocialism: Memory, Consumption, Germany reprobate is that he seems to have almost noeasons or psychological motivations for most of his crimes He doesn t seem to care about anything Reading this book I thought a lot about the Bruce Springsteen song Nebraska Simenon s ecstatically bleak Dirty Snow teeters on the fulcrum between four and five starness and only just barely comes to Buddha Recognizes Buddha rest on the four star side A lot of hand wringing and soul searching went into thisating or at least two minutes worth but in the end I concluded that the only uality Dirty Snow lacks is that ineffable something or other that makes a novel grab you by the balls and shout I m a five star book damn it Hearken to my greatness The first thing I want to say about Dirty Snow is actually something about two other books namely Sartre s Nausea and Camus The Stranger both of which you can safely chuck on the book burning pyre because Dirty Snow is the definitive fictional The Substitute Bridegroom rendering of existentialism Unlike its celebrated forebears Simenon s work is actually alive not just some nakedly abstract concept onto which character and plot are clumsily affixed The protagonist Frank is a nineteen year old asshole in a presumably German occupied country during World War II The location is appropriately indistinct Like everything else it s pointless Frank has noeal friends and doesn t give a shit about anybody not his fretful mother Lotte who uns a brothel out of their apartment not Sissy the girl next door who s infatuated with him and not
Kromer His Partner In Crime Not Even Himself Entirely Lackinghis partner in crime Not even himself Entirely lacking purpose Frank thieves and murders without moral compunction but his crimes are less profit motivated or purely sadistic than they are strange floundering assertions of self in an arbitrary and morally convoluted world The last fifty to seventy five pages of the book are a total downer to the extent that the whole fucked up punitive system of the occupation forces is basically a stand in for life in general We try to make sense of it all or to feel important or elevant in some small stupid way but hey guess what Spoiler We The Dollmaker re all a big ol steamin pile of nothin Good night You ve been a lovely audience Secondeading Frank Friedmaier is hell bent on destruction Son and chief procurer of the local brothelkeeper his mother Frank is nineteen years old and a sociopath of the first order This is collaborationist Vichy France The men Frank admires the most are black marketeers thieves and murderers men who brag about snuffing women during sex Frank starts his descent by killing a fat policeman of the occupying army who shows his avid courtesies to the local whores But murdering the Eunuch is just practice a preliminary and Frank s way of arming himself with a fine automatic Next he murders perhaps what we can call his true mother his old wet nurse who lives outside of town with her watchmaker brother Frank s gripe though he could hardly say so is his lack of a father Frank wants to be a man His crimes are failed attempts to initiate himself into manhood Frank desperately needs guidance That s why he becomes obsessed with the closest person who might help him his next door neighbor Gerhard Holst Frank is fascinated by Holst When he finally condescends to approach Holst s daughter Sissy Frank sadly is her first love it is only to uestion her at length about her father What did he do before the war and so on Later when Sissy touches Frank s heart you know she is doomed You wait anxiously for her despoliation which when it comes is horrendous the act of a monster This tale of brute thuggery and homocide in the wartime demimonde is a kind of a counter uest narrative The anti hero Frank must challenge himself to prove he is a man What he does to everyone around him but ultimately to himself he thinks of as his initiation His fatherlessness his isolation among women appalls him The he thinks of as his initiation His fatherlessness his isolation among women appalls him The when the occupying authorities finally catch up with him is surprising in its brevity and power I found myself exclaiming aloud something I never do This is a wonderful novel It s language is very flat compressed and sinuous I m glad I Archibald Wavell: The Life and Times of an Imperial Servant reread it Second only to The Strangers in the House it is my favorite Simenon Effusivelyecommended PS Kudos to NYRB Classics for winnowing this one from Simenon s huge corpusFirst The Son reading This is wonderful It s the first Simenon I everead and I found it vivid engaging and moving Dirty Snow is my second favorite Simenon outranked only by The Strangers In The House. Como se fossem um só desiste de comer domestica seus desejos e cultiva uma indiferença absoluta em The Dinner Lady: Change the Way Your Children Eat, for Life relação à vida Num estudo da mente criminosa comparado a 'O assassino em mim' de Jim Thompson Simenon mapeia uma terra de ninguém em ue a natureza humana é levada à destruição por forças ue estão além de seu controle.