Zola has rarely displayed the quality of humour, but it is present in the story called "The Fete at Coqueville" ("La Fete a Coqueville"). Coqueville is the name given to a very remote Norman fishing-village, set in a gorge of rocks, and almost inaccessible except from the sea. Here a sturdy population of some hundred and eighty souls, all sprung from two rival families, live in the condition of a tiny Verona, torn between contending interests. A ship laden with liqueurs is wrecked on the rocks outside, and one precious cask after another comes riding into Coqueville over the breakers. The villagers spend a glorious week of perfumed inebriety. A very amusingly and very picturesquely told story. With an essay by Edmund Gosse about "The Short Stories of Zola".