Just think how great it sounds: “My father rented a large secluded and delightful white villa on the Mediterranean coast, and we srarted dreaming of it as soon as the first hot days of June came” …
“Hello, sadness!” – this is what young Françoise Sagan says in the title of her novel, written in 1954, meaning that in addition to unbridled fun and flirting, there should still be such moments in life when it would be nice to stop for a while and think about something not too funny.
The events of this novel about sensual pleasures and the fickle nature of love take place in the summer on the French Riviera on the Cote d’Azur.
Perhaps the intonations of this novel, after many decades, still sound bold and psychologically accurate, but over time, it also obrained an attractive retro character and became the part of French literature history.
“And in Paris I had no time to read: after classes my friends dragged me to the cinema – I did not know the names of the actors, and this surprised them – or to the sun-drenched café terraces. I reveled in the joy of mingling with the crowd, sipping wine, being with someone who looks into your eyes, takes your hand, and then leads you away from this very crowd. We roamed the streets, reached my house. There he used to carry me into the entrance and kissed me: the beauty of kissing was revealed to me. It doesn’t matter what these memories were called: Jean, Hubert or Jacques – these names are the same for all young girls. “ It seems that while reading these lines, one immediately recalls many French black-and-white films of that time.
Cecil ponders the phrase of Oscar Wilde: “Sin is the only bright smear that has survived on the canvas of modern life.” It is clear that Oscar Wilde was, so to speak, a “singer” of sin, he loved to talk about human vices and was well aware of what exactly he was talking about. Of course, in the 21st century, traditional family values are no longer as unambiguous and obvious as for Wilde’s contemporaries. But the heroine of the novel by Françoise Sagan, like a child of the middle of the 20th century, is constantly torn by contradictions between her natural desires and the idea that perhaps for someone this type of relationship is rather painful – in fact, she can be convinced of this by the example of the women of her father who suffer from his impermanence. And if Elsa – “something between a corrupt girl and a demimondaine” – is accustomed to changing partners and only her vanity is a little wounded, then the extremely intelligent and reserved “indifferent” woman Anna simply can’t handle her dissapoinment that a fickle man, who firstly obediently declared himself as her future husband, suddenly felt an irresistible desire to assert himself by making love with the other woman.
Perhaps adherents of Freudianism may think Cecil does not want to share her father with any noteworthy woman. Cecil values a lot this comfortable frivolous lifestyle she leads and is ready to fight for it … And if in the end someone suddenly suffers, then Cecil is ready that such not too frequent bouts of sadness will appear in her life.