Book Review: Sacre Bleu

Moore brings the Impressionist art period to life with his signature blend of humor and romantic interest liberally seasoned with just the right amount of ribald wit. The tale begins when Vincent Van Gogh was shot by a mystery man who demanded a painting. While the art community is rocked by the news of his death, it is Lucien Lessard, a browbeaten baker with dreams of becoming a painter and none other then Henri Toulouse-Lautrec who begins digging for answers. Lessard’s quiet, well ordered life is further disrupted when the muse makes a personal appearance and soon, not even his family and bakery can hold his attention. Populated by a host of genuine art figures, Moore has added a body hijacking art muse and an enigmatic figure known throughout the artist community as Colorman who creates a prized shade of blue pigment known as Scare Bleu.

Irreverent and fun, this romp immerses the reader in 1890’s Montmartre, Paris when painters great and small were literally starving for their art and social diseases were rampant. The pace is smooth and steady while black and white pictures of the artwork and artists being discussed accent the storyline. Particularly interesting is the epilogue where Moore separates much of the fact from the fictional parts of the story which only adds to the appreciation of the neatly spun tale.

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