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Pierre and Jean


Pierre and Jean


“At first he thought she had suffocated herself. Grabbing her by the shoulders, he turned her over, still clutching the pillow to hide her face to stop herself from screaming...”

Guy De Maupassant, a protégé of Gustave Flaubert, is considered one of the fathers of the modern short story and a master novelist.

Pierre and Jean tells the story of a middle-class French family whose lives are changed forever when a deceased family friend leaves an enormous inheritance to only one of two brothers.

Pierre and Jean are two brothers in their twenties. Pierre has recently graduated from medical school and Jean from law school. The brothers have a cordial relationship but as in all families, there are undercurrents of competition and resentment.

One day the younger brother Jean, the attorney, inherits a fortune large enough to keep him in comfort for the rest of his life from an old family friend.   

Pierre is stunned by this and can at first see no reason for this preference.  He begins to think (more and more obsessively) about why this happened as he is driven to know why the family friend ignored him and favored his younger brother.  

Pierre eventually discovers why his younger brother received the inheritance.  

What he learns is shocking and has devastating consequences.  

GUY de MAUPASSANT (1850–1893) is generally considered to be among the very finest French writers. He is the author of Deux Amis, Mother Savage, Mademoiselle Fifi, Bel-Ami, Le Horla, and numerous other novels and short stories.


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