I first read Stendhal’s The Red and The Black (in translation) back in college. I returned to it a few years ago and enjoyed it so much the second time that I’ve been thinking of reading it again.
Andre Alexis raves about the novel in The Globe and Mail. He makes a good point about its place in the French canon:
Part of the pleasure in reading The Red and the Black comes from experiencing the source of so much that now seems typical to French literature. Here we witness the social scenes, Parisian and provincial, that are expanded in Proust, and we meet the classic French outsider whom we know best as Camus’s Stranger. It may be that Flaubert is the more admired stylist. It’s hard to believe that he has had greater influence. As the poet Paul ValÃ©ry said: “We should never be finished with Stendhal. I can think of no greater praise than that.” Amen.”