Review & Giveaway: Rodin’s Lover, by Heather Webb

The Giveaway

Win a copy of Rodin’s Lover in ebook or paperback (US/Canada only). Skip to the entry widget at the bottom of this post to enter!

My Review

rodins-lover-coverI knew only a little about Camille Claudel before I picked up this book. I of course knew about Rodin, and The Gates of Hell is one of my favourite sculptures ever. (If you haven’t yet, try to see it in person; the size and detail is incredible.)

The story was fascinating, and it ranged from Camille’s adolescence until her tragic descent into mental illness. I hadn’t known that of her; such an unfortunate end to a very creative life. The story was a page-turner for me, and I read this book in one, blissfully uninterrupted, sitting. There aren’t too many books I can say that about.

Camille’s path into sculpture, and the workings of an atelier, were my favourite parts of the book. That’s probably the art geek in me. But aside from that, I hoped and wished for Camille’s success, and felt her agonies and frustrations as my own, the sign of a well-written novel. I highly recommend it, and I know I will be picking up Heather Webb’s other work.

Synopsis

A mesmerizing tale of art and passion in Belle Époque France

As a woman, aspiring sculptor Camille Claudel has plenty of critics, especially her ultra-traditional mother. But when Auguste Rodin makes Camille his apprentice—and his muse—their passion inspires groundbreaking works. Yet, Camille’s success is overshadowed by her lover’s rising star, and her obsessions cross the line into madness.

Rodin’s Lover brings to life the volatile love affair between one of the era’s greatest artists and a woman entwined in a tragic dilemma she cannot escape.

***

ADVANCE PRAISE
“Dazzling!….. In Rodin’s Lover, author Heather Webb brings to life, with vivid detail, the story of brilliant and tormented sculptress Camille Claudel and the epic love affair with the legendary sculptor who worshiped her. Deeply moving and meticulously researched, this book will capture your heart, then hold it tightly long after the final page.” –Anne Girard, author of Madame Picasso

“A rich, sensuous novel…[was] written with great empathy for the very human Rodin and his lover, this novel of the visceral world of the 19th century Paris ateliers, of clay-stained dresses and fingernails, lithe models who vow to remain and then go, family love which stays through all difficulties and talent which endures, comes vividly to life.” –Stephanie Cowell, author of Claude & Camille: A Novel of Monet

Rodin’s Lover
[historical fiction/ women’s fiction]

Release date: January 27, 2015
at Plume/Penguin

320 pages

ISBN: 978-0142181751

About the Author

rodins-lover-heather-webb1Heather Webb is the author of historical novels BECOMING JOSEPHINE
and RODIN’S LOVER published by Plume/Penguin, a freelance editor, and blogger. You may also find her contributing to award-winning writing sites including WriterUnboxed and RomanceUniversity.org. When not writing, Heather flexes her foodie skills and looks for excuses to head to the other side of the world.

Visit her website and her blog. Follow her on FacebookTwitter

Subscribe to her newsletter.

Buy the bookPlume/Penguin |  Amazon  |  B&N  |  IndieBound

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The Unabashed Francophile Post, Part 6: Musée d’Orsay

http://www.flickr.com/photos/justaslice/3477561971/

I went to Paris to go to the Musée d’Orsay. Okay, so I went for a few other things as well (food, coffee, Shakespeare & Co. …), but the Musée d’Orsay was first on my list for museums. Though the Louvre is larger and its collection diverse, the Musée d’Orsay enchanted me.

The museum houses a massive collection of Impressionist era art: Rodin’s ‘Porte de l’Enfer‘ (The Gates of Hell), Manet’s ‘Olympia‘ and ‘Le déjeuner sur l’herbe‘, Degas’s ‘Dans un café‘ (L’absinthe) and ‘Petite danseuse de quatorze ans‘, and more than I could ever truly appreciate in a single visit.

I have an especial fondness for Impressionist art, due to its (general) lack of religiosity and its dramatic use of colour and composition. My favourite art history class at uni was the one that dealt with the Impressionist (and later) period. To see these famous works up close and in person – there are no words for my awe.  Degas’s ‘Dans un café‘ (L’absinthe) had struck me with its use of the diagonal composition in the foreground of the painting, something which immediately attracts the eye.

Seeing Rodin’s ‘Gates of Hell’ up close and personal again was fantastic. I’d originally seen a cast of the Gates at the Rodin sculpture garden at Stanford University in California, and it was a treat to see them again in Paris. The Gates are my favourite of Rodin’s sculptures; all the detail could keep me occupied for hours.

The museum itself is a wonder to see – housed in a former train station, the light and dramatic arches are stunning. I photographed the header at the top of my blog in the museum. From the walkway near the clock, you can see through the center of the clock over Paris, including Montmartre and the Eglise Sacre Coeur on the hill. I would have liked to spend an entire day in d’Orsay, but I only had a few hours. It’ll be first on my list of museums to visit when I next go to Paris.