Cousin Bette

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0120120102

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. It's a city full of temptations, in which money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

Honore de Balzac remains one of France's greatest writers. The author of over ninety novels and stories, his great work is the epic series of interlocking novels, La Comedie Humaine, designed to portray the radical changes France experienced after the Revolution and Empire. Balzac died three years after completing Cousin Bette, in 1850.

The Reader is Alex Jennings, who is currently appearing in The Collaborators as Mikhail Bulgakov at the National Theatre and will shortly be seen in Silk on BBC One. His many readings for Radio 4 include Chesil Beach by Ian Mcewan, Casino Royale by Ian Fleming and Speaking for Themselves, the letters of Clementine and Winston Churchill.

Cousin Bette is translated by Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Alex Jennings reads Honore de Balzac's classic story of jealousy, malice and temptation.

0220120103

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, the incorrigible Baron Hector Hulot meets a captivating young woman, Madame Marneffe, and Cousin Bette tries to bind the young sculptor, Count Wenceslas Steinbock, that she has 'adopted', ever closer.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Baron Hulot meets the captivating Madame Marneffe and Bette binds her young sculptor close

0320120104

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, as Bette and Madame Valerie Marneffe find common cause and prepare to entrap Baron Hulot, Bette learns some unwelcome news about her young sculptor Wenceslas.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Bette finds a fellow conspirator in Madame Marneffe but loses her hold on Wenceslas.

0420120105

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, as Hulot's debts spiral further out of control, Bette seizes on a new plan to destroy her detested family.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

As Hulot's debts spiral out of control, Bette forms a new plan to destroy the family.

0520120106

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, the arrival of a brooding Brazilian has upset the careful balance of lovers that Valerie Marneffe had contrived. Briefly Hulot and Crevel find themselves allies, not rivals, for her love.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

The arrival of a brooding Brazilian brings a temporary alliance between Hulot and Crevel.

0620120109

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, Hortense discovers Wenceslas's interest in Valerie and Valerie drops a bombshell on all four of her lovers at once.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Hortense discovers Wenceslas's infidelity and Valerie drops a bombshell on four lovers.

0720120110

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, Baron Hulot faces the humiliation of being caught inflagrante with dignity and his loyal Adeline prepares to lose everything for his sake.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Hulot gets badly caught out, and loyal Adeline prepares to lose all for his sake.

0820120111

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, Hulot's wicked plan to pay off his debts by sending his uncle to speculate in Algeria are discovered and his disgrace has disastrous consequences.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Hulot's financial misdeeds are discovered and his disgrace has disastrous consequences.

0920120112

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's episode, as Hulot's debts spiral further out of control, Bette seizes on a new plan to destroy her detested family.

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

Adeline turns to Hulot's first mistress for help in finding her incorrigible husband.

10 LAST20120113

Cousin Bette is one of the best loved and most admired of Honore de Balzac's novels, written when his powers were at their height and marking the culmination of his extraordinary chronicle, La Comedie Humaine.

A tale of seductive women and philandering men, of passionate affairs and spiralling debts, Cousin Bette paints a vivid portrait of Paris in the 1830s and '40s. In a city full of temptations, money is king, morals are loose and the appeals of the virtuous are usually in vain. In the midst of it all sits a poor relation, Cousin Bette, like a spider in her web. Fuelled by bitterness and jealousy, she is determined to weave destruction into the lives of her extended family, the socially superior Hulots.

With her friend and accomplice, the beautiful Madame Marneffe, Bette sets out to manipulate events so that men are brought to their knees and their wives to despair, and she attains the power and prestige she seeks.

In today's final episode, the Brazilian discovers that his love has been betrayed and wrecks vengeance that quite outdoes all Bette's most wicked plans. And the incorrigible Baron is returned to his family, for now..

Cousin Bette was written in less than a year, in serial instalments, often only completed just before the deadline. Within its pages, Balzac conjures a kaleidoscope of characters from all walks of life, chronicles the rise of a grasping bourgeoisie and tells a gripping tale of jealousy, passion and treachery.

The reader is Alex Jennings.

The translator was Marion Ayton Crawford and the abridger was Sally Marmion.

The producer is Di Speirs.

The Brazilian discovers that his love has been betrayed and wreaks vengeance.