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Father Milon

Henri René Albert Guy de Maupassant (5 August 1850 – 6 July 1893) was a 19th-century French author, remembered as a master of the short story form, and as a representative of the Naturalist school, who depicted human lives and destinies and social forces in disillusioned and often pessimistic terms. Maupassant was a protégé of Gustave Flaubert and his stories are characterized by economy of style and efficient, seemingly effortless dénouements. Many are set during the Franco-Prussian War of the 1870s, describing the futility of war and the innocent civilians who, caught up in events beyond their control, are permanently changed by their experiences. He wrote 300 short stories, six novels, three travel books, and one volume of verse. His first published story, “Boule de Suif” (“The Dumpling”, 1880), is often considered his masterpiece.

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I ladri di cadaveri

Giulio Piccini, in arte Jarro (Volterra, 1849 – Firenze, 1915), è stato uno scrittore e giornalista italiano. Fu autore prolifico, erudito e popolare in un sol tempo, e certo tra i suoi contemporanei lasciò un segno non indifferente. Romanziere popolare e non, studioso di letteratura e storico, giornalista, critico teatrale attento, umorista “giallista”, esperto dell’arte culinaria, intimo di Gabriele d’Annunzio durante la permanenza del Vate a Firenze. I suoi libri si ritrovano, con una certa facilità, nelle collezioni private e nelle biblioteche poiché godeva di stima tanto fra i “colti” quanto tra i lettori più semplici. E basterebbe la pubblicazione, a sua cura, degli scritti di Dante Alighieri, di Andrea Cavalcanti, di Pietro Giordani, di Guido Vernani e di Jacopo Alighieri, di cui la sua bibliografia è ricca, per intuire che Jarro era anche un autentico erudito.
Conobbe un discreto successo a partire dagli anni ottanta del XIX secolo “quando la fiorentina La Nazione accoglieva nelle sue colonne, settimana per settimana, i motti i frizzi le note le piacevolezze gli articoli in cui, tra il faceto e il serio, il brio e la cultura di Jarro facevano, da ottimi alleati, le prove più saporite, spasso e interesse del pubblico fine Ottocento, certo meno scaltro ed esigente di quello d’oggi, in fatto di salse piccanti e di pimentati intingoli, ma provvisto di non minor gusto e di non meno sagace intelligenza”.
Pubblicò volumi leggeri e intriganti sul teatro, a carattere critico, umoristico e aneddotico, parlando di cantanti, attori e attrici, acrobati, concertisti, musicisti, mimi e ballerine; biografie di uomini politici; romanzi popolari e un volume che, già nel 1910, apriva le porte alla nuova arte del cinema.
È sepolto a Firenze, nel cimitero di Soffiano.

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Boule de Suif

Boule de Suif, translated variously as Dumpling, Butterball, Ball of Fat, or Ball of Lard, is a famous short story by the late 19th-century French writer Guy de Maupassant, first published on 15/16 April 1880. It is arguably his most famous short story and is the title story for his collection on the Franco-Prussian War, titled Boule de Suif et Autres Contes de la Guerre (Dumpling and Other Stories of the War).

Henri René Albert Guy de Maupassant  (5 August 1850 – 6 July 1893) was a 19th-century French author, remembered as a master of the short story form, and as a representative of the Naturalist school, who depicted human lives and destinies and social forces in disillusioned and often pessimistic terms. Maupassant was a protégé of Gustave Flaubert and his stories are characterized by economy of style and efficient, seemingly effortless dénouements. Many are set during the Franco-Prussian War of the 1870s, describing the futility of war and the innocent civilians who, caught up in events beyond their control, are permanently changed by their experiences. He wrote 300 short stories, six novels, three travel books, and one volume of verse. His first published story, “Boule de Suif” (“The Dumpling”, 1880), is often considered his masterpiece.

Translated by Albert M.C.

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Clubfoot the Avenger – Being Some Further Adventures Of Desmond Okewood, Of The Secret Service

George Valentine Williams, (1883–1946) was a journalist and writer of popular fiction. Williams was born in 1883. He was the eldest son of the chief editor at Reuters; both his brother and an uncle were also journalists. He replaced Austin Harrison as the Reuters correspondent in Berlin in 1905, aged 21. In 1908, he left Reuters to join the Daily Mail, filing stories from Paris and covering the Portuguese revolution of 1910. He was in the Balkans at the outbreak of World War I and became one of the first accredited war correspondents in March 1915. William Beach Thomas had been reporting the war for the Daily Mail in the period before official accreditations were granted. When the British government relented its opposition to the presence of journalists in 1915, having been warned by Theodore Roosevelt that reporting limitations were affecting public opinion in the United States, Williams stepped into the role. In December 1915, Williams enlisted for service in the Irish Guards and Beach Thomas took his place as an accredited reporter in France. Williams was awarded the Military Cross as a soldier and wrote two autobiographical books about his war-time experiences. In the aftermath of war, he travelled widely as a reporter, covering events such as the Versailles Peace Conference and the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamen, as well as events in America. Harold Nicolson met him in connection with events at Versailles and described in a diary entry that “He is far too intelligent to be employed by such a paper” (the Daily Mail). It was during this period that he began writing thrillers and around 1926 he gave up his post as Foreign Editor of the Daily Mail to pursue a full-time career as an author. Williams was too old for active service at the outbreak of World War II. He joined the Secret Intelligence Service, vetting potential new recruits such as Malcolm Muggeridge and Kim Philby. He was transferred to the British Embassy in Washington in 1941 but soon after left for Hollywood, where he worked as a scriptwriter for Twentieth-Century Fox and Metro-Goldwyn Mayer.
Williams was married to Alice Crawford. He died in 1946.

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