Sunday, March 28, 2010

I Tip My Hat to You, Bel Ami: Part II

So, the second half of the Bel Ami was full of sex and scandal and I loved every minute of it. Georges seems to look at seducing women as a kind of sport….and let’s just say, he’s one hell of an athlete.

Love & Marriage…?
I was actually surprised Georges and Madeleine ended up getting married. Most likely I was because he seemed to want her since the beginning of the book and it would be too good to be true if he got want he wanted. But even when Madeleine does agree to marry Georges, you knew something just wasn’t right. She was so business-like and cold to him. A big moment that spoke volumes was when they were traveling to his parents after they were married. Georges wanted to show his affection to her and kiss her but Madeleine kept saying that was childish and not to spoil it. As their marriage continues, you learn it is passionless and George finds comfort in Clotide quickly .

It’s all about the benjamins…or francs
When Madeleine’s good friend Comte de Vaudrec passes away and leaves her all his money, Georges cannot help himself and his greed overtakes him. He is upset Vaudrec didn’t leave his estate to him. He even accuses Madeleine of being Vaudrec’s lover which she adamantly denies. She could care less if they accept the money. But there is no way Georges is walking away from this money so he manipulates the situation in order for them to accept it and it not look scandalous to the rest of society. The Du Roys = instant millionaires

Cougar town
One evening, Madeleine makes a comment to Georges about how Madame Walter has been married too long to begin having an affair. Georges is intrigued by her comment and takes it as a challenge. He begins to pursue her and it’s probably the funniest subplot of the book. From secretly meeting her in church to tricking her to come to his love shack, Georges will stop at nothing to seduce Madame Walter. Unfortunately for him, she becomes madly in love with him while he’s repulsed by her childlike lovey dovey behavior towards him. All the while, Georges is still carrying on an affair with Clotide and is married to Madeleine. Impressive!

The Ultimate Conquest
Georges soon realizes Madame Walter’s daughter Suzanne would be the ultimate prize to marry since her father has made himself into a millionaire. So how does he get out of his marriage to Madeleine? He catches her in the act of adultery with the police in tow. Classy move! He divorces Madeleine and coaxes Suzanne into marrying him. Clotide is severely upset at the news that Georges plans to marry Suzanne and accuses him of sleeping with her already. I was pretty shocked when Georges hit Clotide after she repeatedly made her accusations. The book concludes with a huge wedding for Georges and Suzanne with everyone of importance from Paris in attendance. You were just waiting for something horrible to happen, but it never did. Georges feels on top of the world as he leaves his wedding. Never breaking from his deceitful behavior, he vows to continue his affair with Clotide while he has his young new bride on his arm.

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