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I love the voice of this novel. The writing is sensitive, thoughtful, honest. Simone de Beauvoir is great and she really gets it–it being emotional turmoil. She’s delicate with the plot line, but she’s astute as hell.
Francoise is the star of the book. She’s in an open relationship of 10 years with Pierre. Then she brings this younger girl named Xaviere around in order to help her start her life, and of course Pierre and her start an affair. But that’s not the problem. The problem is that Xaviere is unbearable. She says dumb things, does dumb things. Wants Pierre to herself. Shit like that.
So even tho Francoise hates how much Xaviere’s presence changes her relationship, she allows it because of how much she values freedom. Like telling Pierre to drop the girl would be beyond the point because Xaviere is a friend in their lives. It’s definitely frustrating watching Francoise pretend to be okay tho. She’s disappointed and you feel that same way reading along.
Best line: The decisions Francoise expected of him had to come from his own will; all her happiness rested to his free will, and over that she had no hold. -Simone de Beauvoir