It was the second Mauriac`s novel I read in just a few days so the writer was no mystery man to be at the moment of the opening fraze of this novel. In this novel he also shows how social things mean quite a lot to him, depicting the bourgeouis idille in a way even commie writers wouldn`t be ashamed of. The central person of this book is an old rich man who writes a goodbye letter to his family that he despises and that is afraid of him and that hates him. The old man isn`t really a nice person, but most of his relatives are even worse, they all are perverts of some sort; they don`t sodomize, of course, but there`s really very little in all those peoples` lives. In the end the old man suddenly finds some inner peace/harmony which has to do with the fact that he`s already dying, on the other hand it doesn`t really influence anything a lot. I`ll probably never turn into a huge fan of this fellow but I can appreciate his work for sure.