Paris; Monnier & cie (1886). 387pp. mention of 8th ed (perhaps fictive).
A classic of French decadent writing, this novel tells the tale of Mary Barbe, an unloved girl who learns to counteract the cruelty of her upbringing by exploiting her sexuality. She ruthlessly crushes the men who fall in love with her until she meets a young medical student (prone to nosebleeds) who allows her to take out her sadistic fantasies upon him. An early feminist tale- Mary is never punished for her transgressions; she grows in power and depravity, with ‘a heart serene and a dagger raised.’
Very good in original decorative wrappers, lightly worn and sunned. Quite uncommon.