A short-story occasionally comes along that redefines the world and jars it into focus.
This is one of them.
For any writer seeking to master the short story look no further than Boule de Suif.
Guy de Maupassant’s classic short story Boule de Suif takes a knife to French society and peers beneath and what it finds it not nice. Set during the Franco-Prussian War it descends into the mores of the rich and educated and sees them for what they are.
What is fascinating about Maupassant’s insight is how in the tight confines of a short story he reveals how vulnerable and delicate the fabric of human illusions are and how easily they are torn aside and how quickly new ones are established.
Read it in the original French or get a good translation. C’est formidable.