Thursday, August 18, 2011

Book Review: The Swan Thieves

The Swan ThievesThe Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A beautiful contrast between two painters: the madness of one in the modern day and the mystery surrounding one in the 1800's.

Kostova blends art, history, psychology and love story seamlessly in this tender and gripping novel. Robert, the disturbed painter, is seen through the eyes of two women who had tried to love him. The life of Beatrice, the 19th century artist, is discovered through private correspondence between her and her forbidden lover. Their stories are tied together by Andrew, the psychologist who finds himself wrapped up in Beatrice's mystery in order to help his patient, Robert.

Past and present, first-person narrative and antique letters: woven together, the characters are real and sympathetic, their stories ring true, and the reader finds herself frightened, angered, thrilled, hopeless, and uplifted, all at the right moments.

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