Writer, researcher, translator, critic

The Reign of the Evil One


Charles-Ferdinand Ramuz, The Reign of the Evil One [Lausanne; 1917]

Resuming my reading list after an unplanned two-month break means I've got a lot of catching up to do. This short 1917 novel by Swiss social satirist C.-F. Ramuz was a poker-faced delight, maintaining the fantastic conceit of its premise -- the Devil comes to a small Swiss village, and makes it Hell -- with as patient a parody of pastoral naturalism as I've seen. I cheated myself a bit, because I left off reading months ago, just before the third-act resolution, so the impact of the ending was muted for me, but as an entry in my running tally of great forgotten 1910s novels, it deserves rediscovery.

June 18, 2017