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J.-K. Huysmans

J.-K. Huysmans

J.-K. Huysmans (1847-1907) began writing as a naturalist in the style of Zola. His first novel Marthe(1876) was published by Dedalus in 2006 in a new translation by Brendan King. His early works excel in their descriptive ability and he is one of the greatest authors at describing the life of Paris and its surroundings as witnessed by his Parisian Sketches (Dedalus translation by Brendan King in 2004, new edition in 2014). He changed from being an obscure author and art critic to one of the most famous authors of his day with the publication of A Rebours in 1884. A Rebours is a ground breaking novel which captures the decadent spirit of the day and marks his final break with Zola and naturalism. Dedalus's translation by Brendan King was published in May 2008. His novel about Satanism, La-Bas (1891) is surely the cult novel of the nineteenth century. (Brendan King's translation was selected by Beryl Bainbridge as one of the best books published in 2001 in The Independent). La-Bas is the first of four novels about Huysmans alter ego Durtal.
Dedalus has published English translations of En Route (1895), The Cathedral (1898) and The Oblate of St Benedict (1903). Robert Baldick's brilliant book The Life of J.-K. Huysmans was published by Dedalus in the autumn of 2005, updated and edited by Brendan King.
In 2010 Dedalus published Brendan King's new translation of Stranded (En Rade), which was followed in 2012 by the first English translation of The Vatard Sisters and Drifting in 2017.

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