Tomorrow's Eve

Author: Villiers de l’Isle-Adam
Translated from the French by Robert Martin Adams
A captivating fable, even after 100 years
Paper – $20
Publication Date
Paperback: 01/01/2001
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About the Book

Take one inventive genius indebted to the friend who saved his life; add an English aristocrat hopelessly consumed with a selfish and spiritually bankrupt woman; stir together with a Faustian pact to create the perfect woman--and voilà! Tomorrow's Eve is served.

Robert Martin Adams's graceful translation is the first to bring to English readers this captivating fable of a Thomas Edison-like inventor and his creation, the radiant and tragic android Hadaly.

Adams's introduction sketches the uncompromising idealism of the proud but penurious aristocrat Jean Marie Mathias Philippe Auguste, Count Villiers de l'Isle-Adam, a friend and admired colleague of Charles Baudelaire, Stèphane Mallarmé, and Richard Wagner.

Villiers dazzles us with a gallery of electronic wonders while unsettling us with the implications of his (and our) increasingly mechanized and mechanical society. A witty and acerbic tale in which human nature, spiritual values, and scientific possibilities collide, Tomorrow's Eve retains an enduring freshness and edge.

About the Author

Villiers de l'Isle-Adam (1838-99) was a French poet whose works include the short story collection Contes Cruels and the play Axël. Robert Martin Adams was the author of Divertimenti, Strains of Discord: Studies in Literary Openness, and other books.


"This surprising and fascinating science fiction tale has lost none of its charm and vitality even after 100 years. Robert M. Adams's translation should prove highly diversionary and entertaining for a wide range of readers."--Choice

"An interesting and controversial novel. . . . This first translation is graceful and smooth."--Library Journal