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No Tomorrow [PDF / EPUB] No Tomorrow A Bilingual New York Review Books OriginalVivant Denon s No Tomorrow is one of the masterpieces of eighteenth century French libertine literature, a book to set beside Choderlos de Laclos Les Liaisons A Bilingual New York Review books originalVivant Denon s No Tomorrow is one of the masterpieces of eighteenth century French libertine literature, a book to set beside Choderlos de Laclos Les Liaisons dangereuses, except that where Laclos icy novel tells of hellish depravity, Denon s ravishing novella is a paradisal diversion This tale of seduction is itself a seduction, with a plot that could be said to slowly unveil itself before arriving at last at an unexpected consummationSummoned by Madame de T to her country house, the young hero of Deion s novella is taken on a tour of the grounds, only the beginning of a night that not only will be full of unanticipated delights but will give rise to unforeseen, perhaps unanswerable, questions Lydia Davis s definitive translation of Denon s slim masterpiece is accompanied by the French text Peter Brooks s illuminating introduction explores the mysteries of No Tomorrow s original publication and the subtleties of Denon s ethics of pleasure.


10 thoughts on “No Tomorrow

  1. says:

    Beautifully written, unassuming, dangerous,seductive, naughty and fun The hero of our piece is summoned by a beautiful, mysterious lady to her home one night, and once there is taken around the grounds of the house with her who knows what the night will bring I found this fantastical and rather like A Midsummer Night s Dream It was just the right length, and began and ended at exactly the right time and place.


  2. says:

    As someone who is periodically seduced by urbane, crafty older women via secret rooms in their homes equipped with spring loaded devices that discreetly toss entrants onto piles of cushions I was curious to see if this little story would be true to the experience I can speak to the authenticity, Vivant Denon was clearly a man who entered these elaborate portals himself, and the greatest evidence is that he doesn t over share, choice details are all that is needed to bring this world into tas As someone who is periodically seduced by urbane, crafty older women via secret rooms in their homes equipped with spring loaded devices that discreetly toss entrants onto piles of cushions I was curious to see if this little story would be true to the experience I can speak to the authenticity, Vivant Denon was clearly a man who entered these elaborate portals himself, and the greatest evidence is that he doesn t over share, choice details are all that is needed to bring this world into tastefully lighted focus.We open with a man alone at the opera these nights of passion always begin at a show, for me this is usually an afternoon screening at the dollar cinema who has been stood up by the young lady he is mad about Our wealthy Madame seizes this opportunity to spirit the young man away, and even helpfully sends a servant of her own to his house to tell them not to expect him home that evening how often have I heard a woman phone her husband to demand that he pick their kids up from school I couldn t guess The seduction is already underway, the woman is jostled into the man s arms in the carriage ride one must endure crotch grabs played off as absent minded diet coke in cupholder retrievals that are mysteriously missing, and a pro will lightly feign offense and then the other woman is discussed endless rantings about conspiracy theories, which is the modern parallel for society life among the sophisticated in America When they arrive at her estate, a flirtatious stroll on the veranda commences, the night sweetly shrouded with shadows scrambling after her through thick brush in an isolated section of the city park as she searches for her buried chest of sex toys they always forget where the chest is buried, even though most of them have maps it s part of the game We meet the lackadaisical husband and dine with him frequent calls from him are ignored, the ring tone is usually a country pop hit detailing an episode of infidelity and he dismisses himself early The lovers toy with each other, circling around the whirlpool of desire a crying episode, she screams at you to leave her alone, you turn and walk away and are soon tackled from behind, if your lucky you won t hit your head on a root And then the lovers enter the forbidden room, and the tone changes from playfulness to eagerness this could be a hollowed out tree, but my favorites are abandoned junk cars, and in one instance, an old tractor tire The story continues, but I don t want to give everything away, especially the wonderful exchange of entendre that follows with the rival lover attacked at Sonic drive in with a mechanic s screwdriver And then everything repeats in French


  3. says:

    Este livro pequeno mas tem muito para aproveitar 1 Um texto de Anatole France onde relata, n o o conte do do conto, mas as perip cias da sua publica o faz, tamb m, um resumo da vida de Vivant Denon 2 Um pref cio do tradutor An bal Fernandes a acrescentar informa o, ainda desconhecida de Anatole France, e uma pequena an lise do conto 3 Um posf cio do tradutor onde refere outros autores que criaram obras inspiradas no conto de Vivant Denon 3.1 Honor de Balzac num texto Psicologi Este livro pequeno mas tem muito para aproveitar 1 Um texto de Anatole France onde relata, n o o conte do do conto, mas as perip cias da sua publica o faz, tamb m, um resumo da vida de Vivant Denon 2 Um pref cio do tradutor An bal Fernandes a acrescentar informa o, ainda desconhecida de Anatole France, e uma pequena an lise do conto 3 Um posf cio do tradutor onde refere outros autores que criaram obras inspiradas no conto de Vivant Denon 3.1 Honor de Balzac num texto Psicologia do Casamento inserido na Com dia Humana 3.2 Milan Kundera no seu romance A Lentid o 3.3 Louis Malle no filme Os Amantes 4 O conto Sem Amanh .A Vivant Denon foi pintor desenhador, escritor e diplomata Era um homem bem falante que conquistava a aten o de homens e de mulheres Teve uma vida boa e repleta de aventurasobtivera as boas gra as de Luis XV, de Luis XVI, e assistira inc lume persegui o de fidalgos, como ele, nos dias do Terror seduzira Bonaparte frequentara os aposentos de Josefina e acompanhara Napole o na sua poca de fervor imperialista, n o a combater mas a desenhar a desenhar t o furiosamente como Napole o conquistavaAo regressar foi nomeado director do Museu do Louvre que, na poca, se encheu de obras desviadas de outros museus Se o Louvre comprava, o Louvre tamb m roubava e transformava se no Grande MuseuDenon cansou se e pediu para se retirar Viveu o resto dos seus dias numa casa de onde podia ver da janela o Sena e a fachada do Museu onde est instalada a galeria Vivant Denon.B Sobre a publica o do conto Sem Amanhh v rias hist rias curiosas, entre as quais a de uma edi o de exemplar nico, fechada numa caixa met lica e emparedada numa muralha do subsolo do Louvre Durante muitos anos foi um texto pouco conhecido e de dif cil aquisi o C Sem Amanh um conto libertino, n o pelo texto onde tudo muito subtil, mas pelo enredo A ac o come a de noite, a meio de uma pera, e termina na manh seguinte As personagens s o o narrador um ing nuo de vinte anos a Senhora de T quetinha regras de dec ncia e estava lhes escrupulosamente ligadao marido da Senhora de T e o marqu s amante oficial da Senhora de T O enredo simples o jovem convidado pela Senhora a lev la a casa Jantam e o marido vai dormir Eles passeiam um pouco pelo jardim, onde visitam um pavilh o regressam a casa e passam por uma sala de paredes com espelhos, que d entrada a outra onde est um dossel com muitas almofadas no qual a Senhora de T se deita Na manh seguinte chega o marqu s e os quatro conversam um pouco O jovem percebeu que era chegada a sua altura de partir, e retomar a sua vida, porque aquela hist ria, para ele, n o teria amanh Fica a d vida de quem a verdadeira Senhora de T um m r frio, como diz o amante habitual ou um inc ndio como pareceu ao amante de uma noite S lendo sem nunca esquecer que a Senhora de T muito decenteO amor prazer op e se com tanto rigor ao amor paix o como a liberdade escravatura Esta a raz o de chamarmos ao primeiro libertinagem e ao segundo paix o, ou seja, um facto suportado, recebido, imposto, padecido No amor paix o o agente, aquele que actua, Eros Atingidos pelas suas flechas, os dois amantes s o os pacientes Aceitam com passividade o curso inexor vel de um destino que n o escolheram Pelo contr rio, o libertino escolhe o objecto do seu prazer O sangue frio preside ordena o dos seus transportesRoger Vailland


  4. says:

    Think of No Tomorrow as light, fluffy love play love play that never actually ends in sex, but which leaves the reader half delighted, half desirous, not knowing whether to fap or clap These are not the heavy artillery of Choderlos de Laclos s Les Liaisons Dangereuses They are altogether different, and I misdoubt me that there is another work like it anywhere.As Talleyrand once said the quote is in Peter Brooks s excellent introduction , Whoever didn t live before the French Revolution ne Think of No Tomorrow as light, fluffy love play love play that never actually ends in sex, but which leaves the reader half delighted, half desirous, not knowing whether to fap or clap These are not the heavy artillery of Choderlos de Laclos s Les Liaisons Dangereuses They are altogether different, and I misdoubt me that there is another work like it anywhere.As Talleyrand once said the quote is in Peter Brooks s excellent introduction , Whoever didn t live before the French Revolution never knew the sweetness of life la douceur de vivre.This short work casts us into the world of the paintings of Boucher and Fragonard I remember, some years ago, visiting the Mus e Cognac Jay in Paris and seeing one after another of these paintings, all in an 18th century setting It was an incredible experience Lydia Davis s excellent translation you can judge it for yourself, as this thin New York Review of Books volume also includes the original French brings this delightful meringue to light It is a book worth reading and re reading, while remembering the most delicious scenes of our past lives


  5. says:

    On my first read, I was a little underwhelmed But on a re read, I felt I was able to appreciate itPartially for turns of phrases like thisThe moon was setting, and its last rays soon lifted the veil of a modesty that was, I think, becoming rather tiresomeAnd sentences that just seem so true like thisLove demands multiple tokens it thinks it hasn t won anything as long as something is still left to be wonPartially for all the indirect stuff in here All the unspoken thing On my first read, I was a little underwhelmed But on a re read, I felt I was able to appreciate itPartially for turns of phrases like thisThe moon was setting, and its last rays soon lifted the veil of a modesty that was, I think, becoming rather tiresomeAnd sentences that just seem so true like thisLove demands multiple tokens it thinks it hasn t won anything as long as something is still left to be wonPartially for all the indirect stuff in here All the unspoken things alluded to and in the background For example, here s the opening paragraph I was desperately in love with the Comtesse de ______ I was twenty years old and I was naive She deceived me, I got angry, she left me I was naive, I missed her I was twenty years old, she forgave me, and, because I was twenty years old, because I was naive still deceived, but no longer abandoned, I thought myself to be the best loved lover, and therefore the happiest of men She was a friend of Mme de T______, who seemed to have some designs on me yet did not wish to compromise her dignity As we shall see, Mme de T______ possessed certain principles of decency to which she was scrupulously attached. That paragraph is so wonderfully confusing and circuitous, that I didn t really think much about its meaning on first read The rest of the story does not concern Comtesse de _____ Instead, the main character who is older now is being slowly seduced by Mme de T_____ Then, lost in all the paragraphs somewhere, Mme de T____ talks about Comtesse de _____ she s a Proteus of forms, she charms with her manners she attracts, she eludes How many roles I ve seen her play Between you and me, how many dupes surround her How she has mocked the Baron How many tricks she has played on the Marquis When she took up with you, it was to regain her hold over two overly imprudent rivals who were about to expose her She had accommodated them too much, they had had time to observe her eventually, they would have caused a scandal But she brought you onto the scene, gave them a hint of your attentions, led them to pursue her anew, drove you to despair, pitied you, consoled you and all four of you were content Oh what power an artful woman has over youOnly on second read did I connect what Mme de T___ said here with the first paragraph and come out with a fuller view of what the main character was talking about in that first paragraph His relationship with the Comtesse is otherwise veiled Also, it is another layer of fun to note that artful woman line since that is exactly what Mme de T_____ is also all four of you were content could refer to the current story s actors Mme de T___, her husband, her lover, and the main character A little later down the page, the now older wiser narrator realizes thisI felt that a blindfold had just been lifted from my eyes, and I didn t see the new one with which it was replaced


  6. says:

    I love reading books on history Occasionally I grow tired of heavy, dry tomes and want something lighter and fanciful I don t care much for modern literature, preferring books written a century orago But not because they are historical I like them because they were written by people living at that time in history They allow us to experience the feelings and dreams of people who lived long ago.Often historical novels or Hollywood films get all the details are correct but the thoughts a I love reading books on history Occasionally I grow tired of heavy, dry tomes and want something lighter and fanciful I don t care much for modern literature, preferring books written a century orago But not because they are historical I like them because they were written by people living at that time in history They allow us to experience the feelings and dreams of people who lived long ago.Often historical novels or Hollywood films get all the details are correct but the thoughts and emotions of the characters are modern I understand that this makes the charactersaccessible to modern audiences but I hunger for authenticity Vivant Denon was no ordinary author In fact, No Tomorrow is the only fiction he is known to have written The rest of his works were travelogues He was an engraver, a courtier and a diplomat He accompanied Napoleon on his military campaign in Egypt Denon was the first Director of French Museums He was largely responsible for the collections in the Louvre It is safe to say that Vivant Denon was no hack writer This brief tale of a young man s seduction by an older married woman is a window into the past The opera house where they first meet is seen through the eyes of an author who had spent many hours in opera houses Their long flight by coach to her husband s secluded estate necessitates changing horses multiple times much as we would refill the tanks in our cars Just as we use water to symbolize intimacy, the lovers consummate their affair to the sounds of a stream that runs past the summer house where they sought privacy.On an emotional level, modern readers may be shocked to learn that sex in France during that era was regarded very differently from our ownpuritanical outlook This is the authenticity that I seek To be able to vicariously experience the emotions and outlook of a world so different from our own Not to be titillated, but to actually live, however briefly, in that time No Tomorrow is not graphic It is not pornography It isdreamlike than erotic It is a story in the Romantic tradition An age that ended with the French Revolution and the guillotine Knowing this as you read it lends poignancy to the story


  7. says:

    The cover copy for No Tomorrow Point de Lendemain by Vivant Denon calls it a masterpiece of libertine literature While that is certainly the genre into which it would fit of the 18th Century French variety, I found that advertising the story this way actually minimizes the incredible subtlety of the work and the literary and historic connections The story is simple it is the seduction of the nameless young male narrator by asophisticated and equally nameless older woman, Mme de T The cover copy for No Tomorrow Point de Lendemain by Vivant Denon calls it a masterpiece of libertine literature While that is certainly the genre into which it would fit of the 18th Century French variety, I found that advertising the story this way actually minimizes the incredible subtlety of the work and the literary and historic connections The story is simple it is the seduction of the nameless young male narrator by asophisticated and equally nameless older woman, Mme de T It doesn t quite fit the libertine genre in that the seduction is a willing one and is carried out by a charming older woman Much like The Tale of Genji, which follows the sexual exploits of a young noble man, the narrator is oblique in referring to both the identity of the woman and the acts of seduction itself That is part of what makes the story so charming It leaves much to the imagination and conceals as much as it reveals Unlike The Tale of Genji it is a remarkably slim story but then one evening s seduction doesn t merit a long story The Forward by Peter Brooks was valuable in providing historical context to the story and the question of authorship The early reviewer copy I had featured the French text after the English translation but the published version has facing page translations which would ease comparing the language for readers of French.It is such a slim volume it is certainly worth reading if you are at all interested in the time period and it is highly accessible to the modern reader if you are not sure about an 18th Century libertine novel


  8. says:

    Il racconto Senza domani del Barone Denon risale al 1777 e vuole essere un esempio di come possibile trattare esplicitamente la materia erotica senza usare un linguaggio lascivo.La vicenda si svolge in una notte, rivelando al mattino i veri ruoli dei protagonisti, i quali altro non sono che personaggi di una messa in scena , tanto amata e prediletta nel 700 De Sade ne un altro esempio, seppur opposto a Denon Questo racconto viene citato da Kundera ne La lentezza Madame de T, impro Il racconto Senza domani del Barone Denon risale al 1777 e vuole essere un esempio di come possibile trattare esplicitamente la materia erotica senza usare un linguaggio lascivo.La vicenda si svolge in una notte, rivelando al mattino i veri ruoli dei protagonisti, i quali altro non sono che personaggi di una messa in scena , tanto amata e prediletta nel 700 De Sade ne un altro esempio, seppur opposto a Denon Questo racconto viene citato da Kundera ne La lentezza Madame de T, improvviso oggetto del desiderio di Denon, raggiunge infatti i suoi obiettivi grazie alla discrezione lenta e calcolata con cui ha saputo giocare le sue carte di seduzione


  9. says:

    C est d un ennui Apr s avoir lu la nouvelle crite en 1777, j ai eu l impression de n avoir rien compris ce que j avais lu La version de 1812 est plus agr able lire et compr hensible m me si la lecture n est pas des plus passionnante.


  10. says:

    What goes on in this book would be called a one night stand today, but No Tomorrow Pointe de Lendemain does quite nicely for an 18th century dalliance a la Les Liasons Dangereuse Denon was an aristocratic dandy when this was published in 1777, somehow managed to save his neck from the revolution thanks to some patronage from the painter David, and ended up as a sycophantic dandy in Napoleon s court No disgrace in that I d have sycophanted my ass off to keep away from the guillotine if tha What goes on in this book would be called a one night stand today, but No Tomorrow Pointe de Lendemain does quite nicely for an 18th century dalliance a la Les Liasons Dangereuse Denon was an aristocratic dandy when this was published in 1777, somehow managed to save his neck from the revolution thanks to some patronage from the painter David, and ended up as a sycophantic dandy in Napoleon s court No disgrace in that I d have sycophanted my ass off to keep away from the guillotine if that s all it took This little volume 27 pages is termed a masterpiece of something called Libertine Literature, which was a phenomenon of Louis XVI s court where people with a lot of money, a lot of time, and a philosophy which valued reason and rationalization over morality and emotion created great intellectual constructs to excuse their indulgences If the hippies said, If it feels good, do it, these folks said, If you can rationalize it, it s okay Thus, we have this amusing tale of a twenty year old, seduced away from his Comptesse de by Madame T for an evening of delights The whole affair is elaborate in its intrigues, disguises, and deceptions, as is necessary in this genre Les Liason Dangereuse involved manypeople couples over a longer period of time, but the basic pattern is the same Acts are committed, but not named People are betrayed, but often are complicit in their own betrayal because they are involved in betrayals of their own, which are in turn known to their betrayed None of the betrayed can acknowledge their knowledge of the betrayal to the betrayers, and everyone gets laid, has a great time, saves face and honor, and no one has to admit a thing Thecomplicated, themoving parts so to speak the better the tale One can imagine this brief narrative read aloud by candlelight beside a drawing room fire in mixed company, perhaps after some lady or another has entertained on a harpsichord Everyone taking great amusement from a story in which they or their friends might have actually played a part All would be greatly amused by the antics of others, never having to declare their own impulses or actions Delicious stuff till they bring in the tumbrels and the baskets Let them eatcake


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