Monsieur Venus: Roman Materialiste by Rachilde
Edited and introduced by Melanie Hawthorne and Liz Constable
Published by The Modern Language Association of American, New York, 2004
When the rich and well-connected Raoule de Vénérande becomes enamored of Jacques Silvert, a poor young man who makes artificial flowers for a living, she turns him into her mistress and eventually into her wife. Raoule's suitor, a cigar-smoking former hussar officer, becomes an accomplice in the complications that ensue. A writer and cultural arbiter of a salon in France from the early 1880s until 1930, Rachilde (Marguerite Eymery) won celebrity with this scandalously decadent novel.