Published Jan 2010
One May night in 1922, in a grand hotel in Paris, five of the greatest artists of the 20th century sat down to supper. It would be the only time that Joyce and Proust, Picasso, Diaghilev and Stravinsky were in a room together. Each of these exponents of early twentieth-century modernism was at the peak of his creative powers, and of all of them, Proust was enjoying the most spectacular success. Yet within six months he would be dead.
A Night at the Majestic evokes the luxury and glamour of early twentieth century Paris, the intellectual achievement of the modernist movement and the gossip, intrigue and scandal of aristocratic France. Above all, Richard Davenport-Hines gives us a compelling portrait of one writer’s bravery and devotion to his masterwork – and of the people and the city which gave it shape.