Helynne's Reviews > The Counterfeiters

The Counterfeiters by André Gide
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's review
Jun 30, 2009

really liked it
Read in February, 1982

According to Andre Gide himself, The Counterfeiters (Les Faux Monnayeurs) was the only novel he ever wrote. (He called his other fictional works "stories" and "novellas," although some are of quite substantial length). This novel is the story of a group of young boys in a 1925 French boarding school who get involved in counterfeiting or making phoney money. The most important theme, though, and the alternate meaning of the novel's title, is the typical Gidian philosophy about the dangers of being dishonest with oneself and giving in to one's baser nature. When some of the characters begin a downward spiral in their behavior instead of an upward one, the result is tragedy. Gide went on to become a respected journalist for the next 25 years or so, and never wrote any more fiction. That is too bad, because with this interesting psychological study, he seems to have hit his novel-writing stride.

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