The Blue Period

A Novel
Narrated by: Angela Dawe
Length: 10 hrs and 18 mins
3.8 out of 5 stars (68 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A riveting novel about the tragic romance that nearly destroyed a young Pablo Picasso - while granting him his first flight of creative genius.

From rowdy Barcelona barrooms to the incandescent streets of turn-of-the-century Paris, Pablo Picasso experiences the sumptuous highs and seedy lows of bohemian life alongside his rebellious poet friend with a shadowy past, Carles Casagemas.

Fleeing family misfortune and their parents’ expectations, the two young artists seek their creative outlet while chasing inspiration in drugs, decadence, and the liberated women of Montmartre - creatures far different from the veiled ones back home.

The new life feels like bliss, and nothing can come between them…until a dark-haired, enigmatic muse enters the picture. The two artists’ passion for Germaine will lead to a devastating turn. Amid soul-searching and despair, however, Picasso discovers a color palette in which to render his demons and paint himself into lasting history.

Bringing the exuberance of the era vividly to life, this richly imagined portrait of Picasso’s coming of age intertwines the love, death, lust, and friendships that inspired the immortal works of a defiant master.

©2019 Luke Jerod Kummer. (P)2019 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Critic Reviews

“In rich, color-infused passages…Kummer’s descriptions of Paris at the turn of the century and the emotional turmoil within fame-destined Pablo create a quixotic tone that fans of lush biographical fiction will find especially alluring.” --Booklist

The Blue Period takes the reader from the alleys and soot-covered buildings of Barcelona to the four-story beige-brick #49 on Rue Gabrielle and the studio that housed Picasso, Casagemas, Gargallo and other women, adding architectural and atmospheric detail along the way.” --Historical Novel Society

“Luke Jerod Kummer’s tenderly crafted portrait of Picasso as a young artist, just starting out in a foreign country and grieving a great loss, cuts through the stereotypical bravado so often associated with the artist to add richly shaded layers of emotion, insight, and smartly noticed detail.” --Rachel Corbett, author of You Must Change Your Life: The Story of Rainer Maria Rilke and Auguste Rodin

“Lusciously written and deeply imaginative, Kummer’s debut is an edgy, elegant reimagining of a period in Picasso’s life that forever changed the art world. It takes readers from the heat of Spain to the underbelly of Paris, as we follow the artist through friendship, dizzying infatuation, sex, and tragedy as he tries to claw his way to success. A book that feels as passionate and bold as Picasso himself.” --Karin Tanabe, author of The Gilded Years  

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What listeners say about The Blue Period

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Beautiful Narration

A beautiful journey. The audio book is expertly done, her works makes the story even richer.

4 people found this helpful

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A story painted in words

Luke Jerod Kummer’s The Blue Period is a lyrical depiction of Picasso’s blue period. Picasso is shown as a sensitive, prolific and confused painter. He isn’t of this world, but Kummer’s beautiful prose captures his anguish and determination equally well as it describes Picasso’s early work during the years he bounced between Barcelona and Paris. Picasso isn’t my favorite, but now that I’ve read the book, I’m going to take another look. I can’t get the haunting description of “Life” out of my mind. Thanks for a wonderful read and Angela Dawe, a stellar performance.

1 person found this helpful

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Great story about a complicated man.

The book made me appreciate the artist in a totally new way. As a human, a man, a person struggling and triumphing. Nice and fun read.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

Good but with flaws

The story was difficult to get immersed in primarily because of narrator. The information is choppy, and in order to understand the background elements, I had to do research. I did enjoy the last chapter a good deal.

1 person found this helpful

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Want to Be VERY, VERY, Blue, this book is for you.

I did not like this book at all. It was unnecessarily graphic in some areas. I thought it would discuss Picasso's art more during the "Blue Period", but it chose to portray the debauchery, degradation, depression and outright poverty of his early life. It is a book of fiction. Who knows how much of the story is correct. Had it not been one our book club books, I would have never finished it, even on Audible. Most of the people in the club didn't finish it because they found it beyond, beyond.

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Could be interesting history

Couldn't get past the bored sounding narration. Maybe the author didn't write it well but struggled, then just have up.

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Sorry

Could not get into the book. I'm sure it's a good read but not for me