Friday, February 27, 2015

Rodin's Lover by Heather Webb

A special thank you to NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Kudos to the author for her attempt at historical fiction - based on her notes and acknowledgements, she certainly did her homework.  I am always amazed at how an author can take a historical figure and imagine the conversations and interactions that took place surrounding the events that formed their mark on history.  

There were many parts of the story I enjoyed, I often paused to research the works mentioned, Claudel had some amazing pieces and what was more impressive was the obstacles she faced being a woman in the male-dominated art world.  Where the story fell flat for me was Claudel herself - I don't know if the author took liberties with her character, making her unlikable by other women (and the reader) with her sharp demeanor, but it made me limp through the book.  Perhaps the disconnect was done on purpose to illustrate her mental decent.      
I also wasn't overly invested in Claudel's relationship with Rodin.  It was supposed to be a passionate, at times jealous affair, but I didn't buy into it, the writing wasn't strong enough and Webb seemed to say the same thing over and over about their passion for each other.  

I found this book just okay.  I did expect more passionate, especially based on the title, but I found the book a bit boring.  

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