The Republic of Gilead offers Offred only one function: to breed . If she deviates, she will, like dissenters, be hanged at the wall or sent out to die slowly of radiation sickness. But even a repressive state cannot obliterate desire - neither Offred's nor that of the two men on which her future hangs.
This edition of "Hard Times" includes an introduction by Philip Collins. It tells the tragic story of Louisa, starved of the graces of the imagination so essential to emotional well-being, and trapped in a loveless marriage.
This is an historical romance which takes place in Paris and London during the French Revolution. It is also a powerful study of crowd psychology and the dark emotions aroused by the Revolution.
In the eighteenth century, Laurence Sterne explores the temptations of the French capital in a teasing study of foreign mores and Restif de la Bretonne provides an eye-witness account of the Revolution. From the 1800s, Hugo, Balzac, Flaubert, and Zola offer fascinating portraits of the city's teeming humanity; the Goncourt brothers chronicle the explosion of artistic talent; Huysmans describes an evening at the Folies Bergere. Colette chronicles the pitfalls for a young girl in the decadent city of the early twentieth century; F. Scott Fitzgerald revels in the city's glamour; Jean Rhys's lost heroines wander from cafe to cafe; James Baldwin celebrates its sexual freedoms; and Raymond Queneau gleefully reinvents the language of the street. In our time, Michel Tournier's North African immigrant walks a camel along the boulevards, while Nobel Laureate Patrick Modiano brilliantly maps the city's many arrondissements. The alluring power of Paris has never dimmed and it is richly captured in all its facets in these compelling and seductive tales.
This is the story of Steven Spurrier's rich and eventful life in and around wine.
From being inspired by a glass of Cockburn 1908 Vintage Port at thirteen years old, Steven Spurrier joined London's oldest wine merchant in 1964; he bought a wine shop in Paris ('Your wine merchant speaks English'), and organised what became known as the Judgement of Paris, when, at a blind tasting, nine of the best tasters in France placed Californian wines, both white and red, above the greatest French wines, changing the wine world forever.
Steven Spurrier was 2017 Decanter Man of the Year, a title generally reserved for the greatest of the world's wine makers, and is currently President of the Wine & Spirit Education Trust. He has recently planted a vineyard in Dorset to produce sparkling wine.