I have just finished reading Germinal, and LOVE it so much! This time it’s not only distressing, but Zola slipped a hope for a better world at the end of the novel. It is reflected on the ending—and I found myself read this quote over and over again, always feels warm after that. And I also enjoyed Zola’s beautiful metaphors here….
“Now the April sun, in the open sky, was shining in its glory, warming the earth as it went into labour. From its fertile flanks life was leaping forth, buds were bursting into green leaves, and the fields were quivering with the growth of the grass. On every side seeds were swelling, stretching out, cracking the plain, filled by the need of heat and light. An overflow of sap flowed with whispering voices, the sound of the germs expanded in a great kiss. Again and again, more and more distinctly, as though they had come right up to the soil, the comrades were hammering. In the fiery rays of the sun, on this youthful morning, the country was pregnant with this rumbling. Men were springing forth, a black avenging army, germinating slowly in the furrows, growing up for the harvests of the next century, and their germination would soon overturn the earth.” ~p. 478 (closing quote).
Don’t you just love it?