The Second Footman

The Second Footman

by Jasper Barry

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Nineteen year-old Max is the duchesse de Claireville's second footman, but he does not intend to endure the indignities of service for long. He has a plan – to find an aristocratic patron who will become his unwitting accomplice in an audacious fraud.

It is true that in 1880s' France, despite nearly a century of revolution and social turmoil, the aristocracy is still firmly entrenched in privilege, and the gulf between the salon and the servants' hall is as wide as ever. But Max is handsome, quick to learn and confident of his abilities as a seducer of both men and women.

Whether ladling soup into noble plates beneath crystal chandeliers, or reading biographies of the great generals in his squalid footman's dormitory, he is planning his strategy. He, Max, is the man of the future - ruthless, above morality and sentimental attachments.

Yet, when, after a couple of false starts, he at last acquires his patron, he finds himself ambushed by instinctive longings--for friendship, for affection--that threaten his grand plan.

'Be true to yourself...' the saying goes. But to which self? And what is 'truth'?

Product Details

BN ID: 2940150089761
Publisher: Matador Publishing Ltd
Publication date: 01/08/2015
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 200
File size: 1 MB

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The Second Footman 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
jimbo21 More than 1 year ago
Although I found this an interesting story I felt it could have been told with about half the words used. A bit like a Russian novel with so many characters it's hard to remember who is who, especially when some of them have more than one name. My other problem was I couldn't find anyone to really like. Max, or is it Jean or is it Albert? is not a likeable hero, in fact not a hero at all, while his admirer Monsieur Miremont is the definition of Milquetoast, willing to put up with any chicanery on Max's part in order to get Max into bed. It might have helped to have had a little sex to spice up the endless detail of aristocratic living. There are interesting moments, the free for all downstairs among the servants, the stifling attempts at intelligent conversation laced with good manners among the nobility upstairs and the rather crass treatment of both male and female servants by lords and ladies alike. Not an easy read, laborious at times, interesting at others but with a definite aura of "wouldn't want to be any of you" about it.