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on September 24, 2012
Wow, well done. The complete set (in French) plus all kinds of info like lists of characters, places, a section that puts events in historical context and more. Comes with an interactive table of contents and photographs. I'm really impressed. A great use of the ebook format at a superb price.

I'm not French, so I use a French dictionary to help me along. I was surprised to find out that the French Dictionary I have--if not all lexicons (Dictionnaire Electronique du Francais, Lucas Nicolato) works with it automatically. You just get it and put it on your Kindle and voila, the Proust connected to it when needed. I have the Kindle Keyboard--if that matters, I don't know.
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on December 8, 2012
I bought the Modern Library translation for kindle so I could read it a second time without having to handle the six fat volumes, which I had given away anyway. When I saw this French edition for next to nothing, I picked it up too, so I could see the original French whenever I wanted to. It's a nice edition for the most part, and includes some editorial matter and illustrations.

A couple of things:

I don't think it's the Bibliothèque de la Pléiade edition. At least I don't see any sign that it is. That means it doesn't represent the latest efforts in Proust scholarship. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Also, the last title in the series, Le temps retrouvé, doesn't appear correctly in the table of contents. It's there, but it's buried under Albertine disparue, as if it were just some additional chapters under that title.

Still, on balance, well worth a download.
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on September 24, 2012
Le meilleur c'est que vous pouvez (si vous n'etes pas Francais)avoir a votre portee un dictionnaire (Kindle - Archived Items) pour chercher les mots que vous ne savez pas. De plus, lire Proust en francais - c'est presque...magique. Un livre numerique d'excellent qualite.
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on December 5, 2015
Beware. This is not the Gallimard edition, which is pictured when you click 'Paperback'. As others have said, it is missing some of the text, and there is no table of contents. Although the Gallimard edition is not assured to be identical to the Pleiade edition, which is generally recognized as authoritative, it (the Gallimard edition, that is) makes a nice companion to the Tadie biography, also from Gallimard, and so has its place. .Of digital editions, there are others that are better formatted and indexed. Look for one of those. But better, shell out the $50 bucks or so per volume to buy the Pleiade edition and read Proust from a real book His hypnotic prose does not seem well-suited to a digital format.
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on August 23, 2013
I just downloaded this French edition. For a song! And, following the advice of one reviewer, I also downloaded the French Dictionary (all in French). Although it's been nearly 50 years since I last took French (and attempted to read Proust for a French course), I opened the e-book and found it not only easy to read but absolutely amazing to have it recognize the French dictionary, which provided me with instant useful information.

Thank you, Amazon! Thank you fellow reader for your advice on the French dictionary. (And by the way, there was no need to change anything in order to get the dictionary to respond instantly, when I pressed a word I wanted explained.)

In my retirement I'm going to enjoy the luxury of good literature. Whether in excellent translation or in the original. I'm thinking of reading Proust in English (using a real book), while referring to the Kindle e-book in the original French - whenever I feel like it.

I love words. I love when they are strung together beautifully by someone who really knows the language. I love being retired and having "time" - time to read and ponder, whether it's a book or events of my own life.

By the way, one person defined "psychotherapy" (my former profession) as "a necessary waste of time". That could describe Proust's "oeuvre" and his life. It could describe retirement - if you really allow yourself to relish the time you have left to waste.

I begin to wonder if Zen or Enlightenment is simply a fruit of old age: I've pondered that lately.

Fare forward, fellow traveler! Whether with Proust or on your own.
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on November 15, 2017
I made the mistake of buying the paperback version. It is NOT the entire volume 1. It is only the second half, starting with "Un Amour de Swann." Useless for those of us looking for the famous madeleine scene. Back it went.
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on October 22, 2015
Not mine to comment on Proust, other than to say it's a wild ride. More interesting to me, and more within my competence as a reader, is the joy of reading A la Recherche on a Kindle, which by the compressive miracle of digital technology, folded all 4500 odd pages into the something the size and weight of a slim paperback, along with a competent French dictionary, in my case, William C Carter's lively and brief ' Marcel Proust, a Life", and all the many marginal notes, 500 or so in my case, I was compelled to make in the course of reading the seven "volumes", and all instantly accessible to be from my very first notations in Swann's Way. This is a new way to read a master work, as time permitted, and not requiring me to hunker down into a pile of volumes and post-it notes containing my occasional glosses. This volume includes a useful synopsis, but better ones are available online, in various forms of Wiki. What leaves something to be desired is the page layout and paragraph spacing, which is a serious drawback reading a novelist whose tendency it is to tendency to " fill in and stretch out a sentence to its utmost breadth and length, to cram the sentence with a miraculous number of clauses, parenthetic phrases, subordinate clauses, sub-subordinate clause" V. Nabokov.
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on October 13, 2015
A la Recherche du temps perdu is a wonderful read, complex, famously difficult... and it deserves a better edition than this particular Kindle version, which like other classics in the Amazon Kindle collection, has been carelessly translated to digital medium. This version is unfootnoted, unannotated, and despite the title, unillustrated, and this is a shame, since Proust, a Truman Capote of his day, drew inspiration for his characters on actual people, many of them in his social circle, on then-famous works of art, music, on the signal events of his day, much of which is now lost on the average reader (me, for instance) but not on his contemporaries. Font choice, spacing, indentation, make for difficult reading, particularly given Proust's hallmark sentence structures, and capacity for veering into extended reflection in the middle of some action, or dialogue. A la recherche is a novel, and a deep meditation on time, culture, social stratification, aristocracy, carnal love, homosexuality, obsession, the roots of art and modernism, Semitism, antisemitism, men's and women's fashion, the dream quality of place names, family names, religious iconography, architecture. The narrator's observations on homosexuality, the book's preoccupation with it, is obsessive, even wildly paranoiac. On the other hand, what a wild ride. The beauty of the Kindle version is the possibility of having the 4500 odd pages of this monster with you wherever you go, so that Proust becomes a kind of companion, by turns subtle, hilarious, obsessive, perceptive, and in much of what he has to say about the rewards, the risks, complexity and tragedy of consciousness, very much of the minute. Buy Eric Karpeles "Paintings in Proust', as the visual references to classical paintings fall thick and fast, and if you don't know the collections of the Louvre cold, you will miss a lot of the humour, and the colour.
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on November 17, 2017
Marcel Proust's existential navel gazing is lyrical, well-written, but feels like an inextricable web of thoughts, observations, feelings, sensations that the reader slowly immerses himself or herself into. Read this without any background noise and focus your attention of the creative prose. Read it in the original text if you are proficient, and it will require your undivided attention. A chef d'oeuvre of epistolary engineering.
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on January 15, 2013
Just to be clear, this review is of the single-volume complete hard-copy edition of La Recherche published by Gallimard, and not of the Kindle edition of anything.

I recently finished a graduate-school course on Proust, and, against my professor's recommendation, bought this edition to use throughout. My professor was right -- first-time readers of Proust need the plot summaries, explanatory end-notes, and possibly the other editorial additions (e.g., introductions) that are standard issue in the excellent mass-market paperbacks of each of the seven volumes published by, for example, Gallimard in the "Folio" series. (The Folio paperbacks, at least if published after 1988, contain the same definitive text as that contained in the current Pleiade edition of Jean-Yves Tadie and published in four hard-cover volumes in that year.)

But having struggled through an initial reading of Proust needing all the help I could get (i.e., a great teacher as well as footnotes, plot summaries, etc.), the virtues of this edition become much clearer. This is especially important because, as my professor told us from the outset, just about anyone's first reading of Proust merely lays a foundation for subsequent readings, should one wish to go in search of lost time, again.

Here are the virtues of this edition as I see it.

First, it contains the full text of Tadie's definitive 1988 Pleiade edition in a single volume.

Second, although this sounds counter-intuitive, it is printed in larger and more readable type with wider margins than the Pleiade edition itself. The pages are larger, and at first glance they appear to be overly crammed with words, but this first impression is misleading. The pages of this edition are, to me at any rate, far more readable than any of the mass-market paperback editions, or than those of the Pleiade edition.

Finally, the quality of paper used by Gallimard in this inexpensive edition is extraordinary. There is no bleed-through from the text on one side of a page to the text on the other. Equally important, this paper is the functional equivalent of the kryptonite so dreaded by Superman or the Gardol so dreaded by tooth-decay (please excuse these dated pop-culture references from the 1960s).

Call me a troglodyte, but I invariably underline, write marginal notes, etc. in soft-lead pencil. A good-quality eraser (e.g., Staedtler Mars) used with care will remove anything I've written in this book once I realize that I've totally missed the point of what Proust was saying and want to re-read (and re-underline and make new marginal notes) without destroying the paper or leaving a trace of what I previously wrote.

This last point may sound obsessive -- okay, it is obsessive -- but so was Proust. The peace of mind I get from knowing that I'm free to make marginal notes that turn out to be inane and can thereafter be "disappeared" as we say in NJ, is huge. I can't think of any author other than Proust for whom getting this sort of "second chance" is so important, at least to me.

Bottom line: the excellent mass-market paperbacks are great for a first date with Marcel Proust, but this Gallimard one-volume edition of La Recherche is the one to hook up with for the long haul, should you be in search of one.
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