My Mother's House and Sido

Farrar, Straus and Giroux



Trade Paperback

248 Pages



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In My Mother's House and Sido, Colette plays fictional variations on the themes of childhood, family, and, above all, her mother. Vividly alive, fond of cities, music, theater, and books, Sido devoted herself to her village, Saint-Saveur; to her garden, with its inhabitants and its animals; and, especially, to her children, particularly her youngest, whom she called Minet-Chéri. Unlike Gigi and Chéri, which focus largely on sexual love and its repercussions, My Mother's House and Sido center on the compelling figure of a powerful, nurturing woman in late-nineteenth-century rural France, conveying the impact she had on her community and on her daughter—who grew up to be a great writer.


Praise for My Mother's House and Sido

"The paradoxes of great literature are those of human nature, and Colette is nothing if not human . . . Accessible and elusive; greedy and austere; courageous and timid; subversive and complacent; scorchingly honest and sublimely mendacious; an inspired consoler and an existential pessimist—these are the qualities of the artist and the woman. It is time to rediscover them."—Judith Thurman, from the Introduction

"[Colette has] a very particularly feminine sort of genius and a great intelligence . . . There is not a word which does not count."—André Gide

"Invested with the distillation of experience . . . Pure and beautiful."—Sylvia Berkman, The New York Times

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Read an Excerpt

Born in 1873 in France, Colette was the author of many acclaimed novels noted for their intimate style. She died in 1954.