Guy de Maupassant, 19th century French short story writer was considered the father of the modern short story with his macabre tales full of black comedy.
Unfortunately, they did not interest me in the slightest. They were quite amusing in places and I enjoyed the black comedy, but altogether they were patronising and unremarkable. It was interesting to see that people have not changed in over one hundred years, however. Still drunk, bawdy, relentless and pretty pathetic.