It is the color of the Virgin Mary's cloak, a dazzling pigment desired by artists, an exquisite hue infused with danger, adventure, and perhaps even the supernatural. It is... SacrÉ Bleu.
In July 1890, Vincent van Gogh went into a cornfield and shot himself. Or did he? Why would an artist at the height of his creative powers attempt to take his life... and then walk a mile to a doctor's house for help? Who was the crooked little "color man" Vincent had claimed was stalking him across France? And why had the painter recently become deathly afraid of a certain shade of blue?
These are just a few of the questions confronting Vincent's friends - baker-turned-painter Lucien Lessard and bon vivant Henri Toulouse-Lautrec - who vow to discover the truth of van Gogh's untimely death. Their quest will lead them on a surreal odyssey and brothel-crawl deep into the art world of late 19th century Paris.
Oh la la, quelle surprise, and zut alors! A delectable confection of intrigue, passion, and art history - with cancan girls, baguettes, and fine French cognac thrown in for good measure - Sacre Bleu is another masterpiece of wit and wonder from the one, the only, Christopher Moore.
©2012 Christopher Moore (P)2012 HarperCollinsPublishers
I almost didn't buy this: the sample somehow sounded odd, with Euan Morton's Scottish background not working with the material. After listening to his reading of "Fool" a couple of times, I decided to give it a try. It is wonderful! After a couple of minutes, the performance seems perfectly natural; characterizations are spot-on and the "music" in the prose is enhanced with Morton's exceptional reading. Book itself is not-quite-but-close to Moore's best but the overall impact of the audio is even greater than the book itself.
I live on a tiny river in NC on the southeastern coast. I'm a voracious reader & listener - also photographer and potter.
This was such a cool book and Euan Morton is a fantastic narrator. I really loved that fact that Moore brought in all the famous artists of the time -- from Renoir, Toulouse Lautrec, Pisaro, Van Gogh, Manet, Monet .... He brings them all to life and even if it is a fiction, he's obviously done his research about the impressionist and post-impressionist period. You really felt you were part of that wild life and the mystery of the sacred blue is intriguing. But what really made it was Morton's narration. His characterization is fantastic. I enjoyed every minute.
This was a wonderful book, and a very fresh, unique story. The narrator was perfection. The story moved at a great pace and it was impossible to get bored with all of the back and forth between Juliette and the male characters.
I was disappointed in the ending. I can't explain why without giving away the story but suffice it to say that even though I was disappointed, it is probably a more accurate depiction of humanity than I care to admit.
This was my first Christopher Moore book, and I listened to it while I was studying abroad in Barcelona (after visiting Paris a few weeks before). I didn't even know Art Historical Fiction was a thing before this book, but now (especially as an art nerd!) I wish it was a bigger genre. Christopher Moore's prose is captivating, clever and totally hits you off guard with the funniest lines and moments. Anyone who is a comedy fan with absolutely any interest in Paris, Art History or Historical Fiction needs to listen to this book.
Three years after my first listen and about 15 Christopher Moore books later, I listened to it again. It was just as hilarious (if not more so!) and captivating as the first time I listened.
I am a FLW fan so I didn't expect to be so surprised and engaged by this book. The underlying questions of love, responsibility, family and freedom stimulated a lot of thought and conversation with friends. Mamah was a remarkable woman forced to make a decision that I'm thankful I never had to contemplate in my own life.
Up at the top. The performance was fantastic.
Henri. He would make me feel like a goddess.
"Accident. Couldn't be helped." Best line from a book ever! Read it and you'll know why! I was laughing so hard at some points, I had to pull over! Thank you, Christopher Moore, and thank you, Euan Morton. I'm off to read another Moore/Morton combo.
If you are a Christopher Moore fan, be warned. This book is very different than most of his. Yes, it has the humor that we associate with this brilliant mind, but it seems to be buried more than in some of his other books. Maybe it is simply the subject, which is, admittedly not my favorite.
The narrator does an excellent job of providing a new voice for each character, so he gets a better review than the Audiobook.
The print edition has the appropriate pictures, which is a great help with the narration and flow of the story. While I am not prejudiced, one way or the other (print v. audio), generally, this is one book that I would definitely recommend a print edition over the audio.
sports announcer, cyclist, enjoys to travel and the outdoors.
This book was not for me. I love Moore and his previous works Fool and Lamb but this one no.
I'm a bibliophile since early childhood. Love speculative fiction, odd premises, mystery novels that teach about different places and times.
Christopher Moore is one of my favorite writers when he's on. I love A Dirty Job and Coyote Blue. This is like both and like neither. There's an irreverent view of the Impressionists and Post Impressionists that I really enjoyed. Once someone's work has ended up on tote bags and coffee cups you can forget that they were iconoclastic nightmares of the established art of the time. But this went to unexpected places in delightful ways as well. And like most Christopher Moore ended up exploring art and life in ways you just don't expect. It has a number of cheap tricks. I forgive them all for the comments about the green fairy. I loved this book.
I enjoyed the book from begining to end. The charactors were engaging and sometimes hilarious. Laughed out load many times.
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