by George Giannakos and Robyn Yager | Slowing down a little and breaking out a good book is never a bad idea. But what to read? You could walk into any bookstore and roll the dice on a recent release, but here’s another option: pick up a book that you last put down 5, 10, or 20 years ago. For the next book in Scout’s Read It (Again) series, we’ve picked Gustave Flaubert’s 1856 masterpiece: Madame Bovary.
Why you should read it again: Emma Bovary isn’t a typical, provincial French woman from mid-19th century Normandy. She is one of the most twisted, selfish, weak and complex characters in the history of literature – and Flaubert writes her beautifully. The novel is filled with luxurious spending, affairs, lies, romance, passion, lust, debt, greed – all the necessary ingredients for a scandalously good summer read. Parisian public prosecutors tried to get Madame Bovary banned and actually went so far as putting its author on trial for obscenity in 1857 (he was acquitted). It has – unsurprisingly – never been out of print since (it has also been adapted for the screen many times).
Pair with: A fancy new pair of shoes from Rowan Sky and a solo date to L’Abbatoir sitting at the bar complete with a cocktail, preferably the Sidecar, made with brandy, curacao, and lemon juice (curacao is mentioned in the book during one of Mr. and Mrs. Bovary’s first encounters).