When this book arrived at the store I couldn’t keep my hands off the gorgeous cover. No one paints water color like Claude Monet. Stephanie Cowell’s lovely new novel encompasses both the lives of Claude Monet and the love of his life, Camille. She very adeptly weaves in the stories of many of Monet’s Impressionist friends.
Reading more like a beautiful memoir than a fiction story, CLAUDE AND CAMILLE carries you along on a magical tour of life with artists. One that has changed my whole vision of art in general. I now feel the need to see Claude Monet’s work up close and personal. I want to know everything about his life; not just the fictional part. And I am interested in his cohorts.
I had never given it a fleeting thought that these young artists were so tortured. Yes, I’ve heard over the years about hardships and head-trips among the artist colonies. But Cowell has brought Monet and his life into my life at a time when I feel compelled to learn more about all things I am interested in. And now I find myself interested in Monet.
There were times in the book when I wanted to throw the thing down and say, “Enough.” Monet sure didn’t learn the easy way; with love or art. But he did have true friends; ones who would give him their last dime and then some. And he did have a women how loved him more than life itself.
One of Monet’s friends tells him,” It gets battered, the part of us that paints, if not by want of success, then by us always demanding more from it. It’s all that you are.”
This novel is well written and a quick summer read with a lovely cover that will draw you in.