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Fantômas (1911)

door Marcel Allain, Pierre Souvestre

Reeksen: Fantômas (1)

LedenBesprekingenPopulariteitGemiddelde beoordelingAanhalingen
564733,037 (3.63)46
A noblewoman is hacked to death in her chateau, a Russian princess is boldly robbed at a posh hotel, and a lord's lifeless body is found stuffed into a trunk. Everyone recognizes the deeds of Fant#65533;mas, a master of disguise whose daring and diabolical crimes paralyze Parisians with terror. One man has sworn to bring the phantom killer to justice: Inspector Juve, who ventures from dark alleys to brilliant salons in his relentless pursuit of the evil genius. The first volume in a series of wildly popular French thrillers, Fant#65533;mas created a sensation in pre-WWI Europe. The original pulp fiction, its appeal transcended every level of society. Cocteau, Colette, and Picasso were avid readers, and subsequent generations of artists, writers, and musicians have drawn inspiration from this enduringly stylish and suspenseful novel.… (meer)
Onlangs toegevoegd doorwreade1872, LizMo, LondonLori76, Koipix, ejmw, ForwardEarth
Nagelaten BibliothekenGraham Greene, Newton 'Bud' Flounders
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1-5 van 7 worden getoond (volgende | toon alle)
Crime story about man who is master of disguise. So mysterious that by end i still wasn't sure what his plan was, which is a bit too mysterious. Overall not bad though. ( )
  wreade1872 | Nov 28, 2021 |
For more reviews and the 1001 Books Spreadsheet, visit http://arukiyomi.com

Every now and then on the 1001 Books list, a novel comes along which is a complete walk in the park, takes absolutely no effort to read and is over before you know it. Fantômas is just such a novel.

Written jointly by Marcel Allain and Pierre Souvestre, who often wrote separate chapters independently before weaving them together, the Fantômas series of novels took France by storm about 100 years ago.

Based around the idea that a series of crimes are actually the work of one criminal mastermind, and a villain whose identity proves elusive to even the best detective in the land, you are constantly on the move from suspect, to crime scene, to aftermath … it’s hard to keep up with it all.

There are enough twists in this short novel that you are going to be caught out by at least one of them. However, Allain and Souvestre leave enough clues for anyone who likes figuring out whodunnits while at the same time ensuring that you know little enough to keep reading.

In fact, as the novel kicked off a series of over 40 books, you should definitely not expect a resolution at the end of this one. Far, far from it.

This is not beautifully crafted literature by any means, and it’s not the best crime fiction you’ll ever read either. But it was so widely read and so hugely influential in its native France that it is not surprising that such influence spilled over into other genres such as comic books.

As such, it’s worth a read in much the same way as you might read Tarzan, knowing that it was the beginning of something special for the world of written and filmed entertainment. ( )
  arukiyomi | Mar 13, 2021 |
This was supposed to be a farcical book in the vein of James Bond featuring Fantomas, a sinister master criminal. I didn't find anything amusing or interesting. I didn't even see the point of the book! I did not finish, reading only 48/254 pages. Life is too short to read lousy books! This is considered a classic by many, it is free on Kindle. It was very popular in England/France in the early 1900's with 11 novels in the series. There were also several films made (2 silent) featuring Fantomas. Not for me! ( )
  Tess_W | Aug 3, 2020 |
Here's the problem with this book: I never really got any idea why Fantomas was doing all this shit. I mean, he gets up into these elaborate disguises so he can kill one person or another, but why does he want that person dead? Not really explained. And he also makes some pretty stupid mistakes for being such a genius mastermind. Shit Moriarty would never have put up with.

I'm just saying, if you're writing a book about a criminal genius, the criminal should do genius things. Not just really convoluted things.

And there's quite a deus ex machina there at the end, too. Trail of the Serpent did it better, yo.

Entertaining enough, sure. Just not really a must-read. ( )
1 stem AlCracka | Apr 2, 2013 |
Many thanks to the 1001 book list because I would have never read this book had it not been on the list and missed out on a gem.

Fantomas is a master criminal, ruthless and brilliantly clever,able to take on any disguise seemingly at will, a real fictional anti-hero long before they became popular. Juve is a quirky but brilliant detective who has made it his life's work to catch this criminal, seeing links in seemingly unconnected crimes where no one else can spot them. But even at the very end of the book, which is both cleverly constructed and yet horrifying in its simplicity, you still have no real idea who Fantomas is or even whether or not that he even exists at all other than in Juve's mind. Is he real or a sort of Boogie Man created to scare the upper tiers of Parisian life?

This book was first published in 1911 and became an instant hit across all levels of French society, but then it is so much more than a simple criminal tale. It also shows Parisian in particular, and French in general, avant-garde life in all its many shades which in itself made it all the more interesting to me at least. At times the language and plot-line feels a little dated, a bit formulaic and as if it was written in a rush, which it was, Allain and Souvestre had a deadline to meet but this should not really detract from the overall quality of the read. I mean Agatha Christie and Sherlock Holmes are a little dated now too despite their many reincarnations on screen.

The only thing that stops it getting full marks is the fact that the story is incomplete, it is after all only the first one in the series and there are another 40+ books to follow and I am unsure whether or not I will ever get around to reading another. ( )
  PilgrimJess | Feb 26, 2013 |
1-5 van 7 worden getoond (volgende | toon alle)
An unusual detective story... Vivid and tense.
toegevoegd door Sylak | bewerkCourt Journal
 
To have crime, mystery, and clever characterization in one volume is to have the material for a capital novel. And this is what we have in 'Fantômas.' ... The last capter leaves us full of puzzlement and hope for further series.
toegevoegd door Sylak | bewerkManchester Courier
 
Appreciators of detective novels should not miss 'Fantômas.' It is a story that grips the reader.... I loudly ask for more.
toegevoegd door Sylak | bewerkEvening News
 
For a baffling and beguiling detective story commend me to 'Fantômas'
toegevoegd door Sylak | bewerkThe Referee
 
By far the best detective story that I have read for a very long time... At the end there is a thrilling surprise.
toegevoegd door Sylak | bewerkSphere
 

» Andere auteurs toevoegen (11 mogelijk)

AuteursnaamRolType auteurWerk?Status
Marcel Allainprimaire auteuralle editiesberekend
Souvestre, Pierreprimaire auteuralle editiesbevestigd
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"Fantômas."
"What did you say?"
"I said: Fantômas."
"And what does that mean?"
"Nothing . . . Everything!"
"But what is it?"
"Nobody . . . And yet, yes, it is somebody!"
"And what does the somebody do?"
"Spreads terror!"
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A noblewoman is hacked to death in her chateau, a Russian princess is boldly robbed at a posh hotel, and a lord's lifeless body is found stuffed into a trunk. Everyone recognizes the deeds of Fant#65533;mas, a master of disguise whose daring and diabolical crimes paralyze Parisians with terror. One man has sworn to bring the phantom killer to justice: Inspector Juve, who ventures from dark alleys to brilliant salons in his relentless pursuit of the evil genius. The first volume in a series of wildly popular French thrillers, Fant#65533;mas created a sensation in pre-WWI Europe. The original pulp fiction, its appeal transcended every level of society. Cocteau, Colette, and Picasso were avid readers, and subsequent generations of artists, writers, and musicians have drawn inspiration from this enduringly stylish and suspenseful novel.

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