THE BORGOMASTER OF FURNES George Simenon


THE BORGOMASTER OF FURNES, by George Simenon (Adelphi)

Furnes, a Flemish village administered with stubbornness and authoritarianism by Joris Terlinck (the burgomaster) who embodies a bourgeoisie that must begin to deal with the thrust of modernity. Gloomy and bleak family situations. A wealthy and submissive wife, always ready to cry which, however she holds back from her, because she is not used to it and externalises her thoughts and feelings out of fear of her husband. A disabled daughter kept hidden and mechanically cared for by her father. Then something happens which upsets the life of the inhabitants but above all of the burgomaster, who is partly responsible for it.

An inner laceration opens up that will make him question his whole life setting thinking that there may be a possibility of escape and change. But that won’t be the case. Simenon is a writer who manages to rummage and dissect, with an exaggeratedly beautiful writing, in all the nooks and crannies of the human soul, always highlighting the dark sides but also the sweeter and more beautiful ones, always highlighting the social and economic context of the community where the character lives and relates. To be read and re-read like so many other books by this writer that I adore.

Review by Simona Lanfredini

THE BORGOMASTER OF FURNES George Simenon

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