Colonel Chabert (Version 2)

Read by Bruce Pirie

(5 stars; 4 reviews)

The short novel “Colonel Chabert” (1832) is part of Balzac’s great life work, the sprawling novel series titled “The Human Comedy.”

Chabert, an officer in Napoleon’s army, is pronounced dead on the battlefield. His wife then inherits his estate and remarries. It turns out, however, that Chabert has in fact survived the war. When he regains his health, he returns to Paris and tries to take legal action to restore his position. This sets up a conflict between the old military virtues of honor and principle versus the avarice and amorality of society in post-Napoleonic France. - Summary by Bruce Pirie (3 hr 1 min)


Section 1 24:43 Read by Bruce Pirie
Section 2 43:43 Read by Bruce Pirie
Section 3 34:41 Read by Bruce Pirie
Section 4 43:26 Read by Bruce Pirie
Section 5 35:23 Read by Bruce Pirie


my first balzac novel

(5 stars)

The French are so complicated!. This wonderfully read book made me nevertheless weary of humanity. I feel like Chabert, wanting to drop out of society and live a hermit existence, especially avoiding manipulative selfish women!

(5 stars)

What a great story! Sad but insightful. Really well read.