Nana is a novel by the French naturalist author Emile Zola. Completed in 1880, Nana is the ninth installment in the 20-volume Les Rougon-Macquart series. Nana tells the story of Nana Coupeau's rise from streetwalker to high-class cocotte during the last three years of the French Second Empire. The novel opens with a night at the Theatre des Varietes. Nana is 15 years old. Zola describes in detail the performance of La blonde Venus, a fictional operetta modelled after Offenbach's La belle Helene, in which Nana is cast as the lead. She has never been seen on a stage, but tout Paris is talking about her. When asked to say something about her talents, Bordenave, the manager of the theatre, explains that a star doesn't have to know how to sing or act. Just as the crowd is about to dismiss her performance as terrible, young Georges Hugon shouts: "Tres chic!" From then on, she owns the audience. The novel then goes on to show how Nana destroys every man who pursues her.