UNLIMITED Audiobooks and eBooks

Over 40,000 books & works on all major devices

Get ALL YOU CAN for FREE for 30 days!

A Passion in the Desert

Honoré de Balzac

Book Overview: 

Young French officer Augustin Robert escorts artist Jean-Michel Venture de Paradis to Egypt during Napoleon's Egyptian campaign. Napoleon sent de Paradis to record Egypt's great monuments and temples that are destroyed by French soldiers in acts of barbarism. During combat, Augustin and Jean-Michel are separated from their regiment, and they start wandering through the desert fighting for their life. In one of the canyons Augustin meets a leopard he names Simoom and a strange bond between them appears. He begins to mirror her behavior, living in the ruins of a lost city near the caves.

How does All You Can Books work?

All You Can Books gives you UNLIMITED access to over 40,000 Audiobooks, eBooks, and Foreign Language courses. Download as many audiobooks, ebooks, language audio courses, and language e-workbooks as you want during the FREE trial and it's all yours to keep even if you cancel during the FREE trial. The service works on any major device including computers, smartphones, music players, e-readers, and tablets. You can try the service for FREE for 30 days then it's just $19.99 per month after that. So for the price everyone else charges for just 1 book, we offer you UNLIMITED audio books, e-books and language courses to download and enjoy as you please. No restrictions.

Book Excerpt: 
. . .rated with his spurs, and at last the poor animal died, leaving the Frenchman alone in the desert. After walking some time in the sand with all the courage of an escaped convict, the soldier was obliged to stop, as the day had already ended. In spite of the beauty of an Oriental sky at night, he felt he had not strength enough to go on. Fortunately he had been able to find a small hill, on the summit of which a few palm trees shot up into the air; it was their verdure seen from afar which had brought hope and consolation to his heart. His fatigue was so great that he lay down upon a rock of granite, capriciously cut out like a camp-bed; there he fell asleep without taking any precaution to defend himself while he slept. He had made the sacrifice of his life. His last thought was one of regret. He repented having left the Maugrabins, whose nomadic life seemed to smile upon him now that he was far from them and without help. He was awakened by the sun, whose pitiless rays f. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I read this story one night because I couldn't go to sleep no matter how hard I tried. I was in a terrible mood that had something to do with my thoughts on how humans are all selfish and cannot relate to each other and that "affection," "love," "compassion," etc is all bullshit. I get into that sta

The Atheist's Mass is my favorite story in this small volume, followed by A Passion in the Desert.

The writing is spare, yet rich. Not too much description of the environment, which usually bores me as I do not have an imagination that pictures scenes well. The characters are immediately available,

"In the desert, there is everything and nothing," writes
Balzac who never saw any desert. His short story of a
French soldier lost in the Sahara - "an ocean without limit" -
is not what we expect fr the creator of la Comedie humaine.
The soldier's sole companion is a magnificent (female)
panther w lustro

Upon leaving a "menagerie" show a woman remarks to her companion that she wonders by what means the beasts should have been so tamed that their affection was assured. Her companion says that he also felt that way the first time he saw the show until he happened to fall into conversation with an old

Nhe... Not my kind of thing.

"'In the desert, you see, there is everything and nothing.’
‘Yes, but explain——’
‘Well,’ he said, with an impatient gesture, ‘it is God without mankind.’"

Historically "A Passion in the Desert" (one of Balzac's early works; 1830) belongs with works like Les Chouans and "An Episode Under the Terror," s

During General Desaix's expedition to Upper Egypt, a soldier was captured by Arab warriors (les Maugrabins) and ended up crossing the Nile, until reaching the Desert. However, he managed to escape and eventually found refuge in a small oasis.

There, in this inhospitable environment, the Provençal sol

(Another) teenage read. Read it in my elder sister's BA English book.

3,5 αστέρια

Passion has no boundaries, no limits and no explanation. This story will make you think about that. Be passionate.

View More Reviews