The Book About Blanche and MarieBook - 2006
"Blanche is Blanche Wittman (1859--1913), the most famous patient of neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot, a crucial mentor to Freud; Marie is Marie Curie (1867-1934), the first person awarded two Nobel Prizes. In the 1890s, Blanche became the Curies' assistant, handling the pitchblende from which Marie eventually isolated radium. Radiation poisoning led to amputations of both of Blanche's legs and her left arm well before her early death. To the end, she was, especially in Enquist's curious novel, whose narrative he often interrupts with personal memories and reflections, Marie's confidante, especially after Pierre Curie's 1906 death and during Marie's illicit affair with married fellow physicist Paul Langevin, which, when revealed, became a scandal with racist overtones (Marie was Polish and accused of being Jewish) that clouded the awarding of her second Nobel. Marie bonded with Blanche because Blanche, too, knew passionate love--perhaps too passionate, the exclamation marks Enquist liberally inserts to suggest various kinds of heavy breathing imply, to quite escape also being ludicrous."--Booklist.
Publisher: Woodstock, N.Y. : Overlook Press, c2006
Branch Call Number: FICTION ENQ
Characteristics: 218 p. ; 21 cm