Honoré de Balzac
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One doesn't frequently associate Balzac with humor, but stories like this can make one change one's mind. This novelette is the story of a manufacturer from Roussillon named Gazonal who seeks help from his cousin Leon de Lora, a successful painter, in a lawsuit that is going badly. Along with fellow wag Bixiou, Leon de Lora shows his cousin from the provinces what Paris is really like.