Chapter 11 Summary

Louise Colet's Version

Flaubert's mistress strolls arm in arm with the reader, or maybe it’s Braithwaite, and tells the story of her affair with the famous writer from her own perspective. She begins by pointing out that Flaubert was not famous when they met. On the contrary, she was an established Parisian poet with powerful connections, including Victor Hugo. She was a renowned beauty and the lover of Victor Cousin. Flaubert was a provincial young man. "I was his catch; he wasn't mine."

Louise was thirty-five when she met Gustave. He was twenty-four. No, she says, she wasn't bothered by the age difference, though maybe it was more significant to Gustave. Louise was the same age...

(The entire section is 585 words.)