- Eugénie Grandet is an 1833 novel by Honoré de Balzac about miserliness, and how it is bequeathed from the father to the daughter, Eugénie, through her unsatisfying love attachment with her cousin. As is usual with Balzac, all the characters in the novel are fully realized. Balzac conceived his grand project, The Human Comedy, while writing Eugénie Grandet and incorporated it into the Comédie by revising the names of some of the characters in the second edition. Eugénie Grandet is set in the town of Saumur. Eugénie's father Felix is a former cooper who has become wealthy through both business ventures and inheritance (inheriting the estates of his mother-in-law, grandfather-in-law and grandmother all in one year). However, he is very miserly, and he, his wife, daughter and their servant Nanon live in a run-down old house which he is too miserly to repair. His banker des Grassins wishes Eugénie to marry his son Adolphe, and his lawyer Cruchot wishes Eugénie to marry his nephew President Cruchot des Bonfons, both parties eyeing the inheritance from Felix. The two families constantly visit the Grandets to get Felix's favour, and Felix in turn plays them off against each other for his own advantage. On Eugénie's birthday, in 1819, Felix's nephew Charles Grandet arrives from Paris unexpectedly at their home having been sent there by his father Guillaume. Charles does not realise that his father has gone bankrupt and is planning to takes his own life. Guillaume reveals this to his brother Felix in a confidential letter which Charles has carried.