Sunday, March 16, 2014

Life Studies: Stories by Susan Vreeland


As usual in Ms. Vreeland’s fiction, art is the knot that binds these seventeen stories together.  Half of them are centered around famous artists, including Monet, Renoir, van Gough, Manet, Cezanne, and Modigliani, while the others involve the effects of art on the life of ordinary people.


I have read several books by Ms. Vreeland, and hope to continue reading her future works, but in all honesty I have to say this was my least favorite. The stories weren't bad, but they just didn't really grab me and pull me in either, like her wonderful novel The Passion of Artemisia did. Also, for a casual reader, who has little or only an average knowledge of art, this collection can be a little confusing. If you are new to Susan Vreeland, I really don’t recommend starting with this short story collection, or if you've read it and your reaction was similar to mine, I recommend giving one of her novels a try.

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