The Vagabond (novel)
|Original title||La Vagabonde|
Published in English
The Vagabond (French: La Vagabonde) is a 1910 novel by the French writer Colette. It tells the story of a woman, Renée Néré, who after a divorce becomes a dancer in music halls. It was inspired by Colette's own experiences.
Frances Keene called The Vagabond an "enchanting, sincere and beautifully constructed novel" in a 1955 review for The New York Times. Keene complimented the book's English translation, but wrote: "It is a pity that its title has had to be transliterated. What 'La Vagabonde' means, of course, is 'The Wanderer,' as Renee Nere points out when considering second marriage: 'I shall have everything ... and I shall lean over the edge of a white terrace smothered with the roses of my gardens and shall see the lords of the earth, the wanderers, pass by!'" Keene ended the review: "Colette has the natural sober tone, the importance attached to feelings, the graceful brevity which Maurois once said 'define one of the forms of the French novel.' But above all her occasional hoarse cry of loss voices the complex anguish of our time."
In 2011, James Hopkin wrote about The Vagabond for The Guardian: "Has the novel dated in the course of a century? Not at all. There's enough energy and inventiveness here to blow away any dusty hints of antiquarian charm. And for years I've been telling people that no one writes about relationships as perceptively as Colette."
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