The Counterfeiters, by Andre Gide, is a story about several characters all interconnected through misconnections, subterfuge, lies, and artifice.
I didn't really like the book - I found the interconnections too pat and forced - for me, it's too similar to the breathless shock formula used by soap operas: "OMG! Luara, Eduoard's unrequited love and best friend, is pregnant by Vincent? And Vincent is Olivier's brother?! That's crazy, because Eduoard is now in love with Olivier, and Bernard, Olivier's best friend, is now in love with Luara! Not only that, but Bernard is now working for Eduoard as his secretary! OMG,OMG,OMG!"[image error]
My chart showing all the character connections.
The book was shocking for the time and deals with casual sex, murder and homosexuality in a casual (and codified) way. However, I was constantly annoyed with the indirect allusions to hot man lust - I wanted them to be straight about it, but no one in the novel was straight about anything - the novel was rife with ambiguous suggestion, tactics and deceit.
The Counterfeiters was also a look at contemporary (pre-War) morality, and what it means to be and do good. But the assumptions of the author and the characters constantly annoyed me, and their obsession with purity was confused with 'doing right.' I don't like the notion of purity, and especially dislike the 'pure woman' and the 'pure child' ideals, and although Gide slapped the notion of purity, it was still a central concern of the book. Since purity is far from one of my central concerns, I was bored.http://uberdionysus.livejournal.com/3...