Tuesday, February 21, 2017

A Piece of the World: A Novel by Christina Baker Kline

(Thank you the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the smash bestseller Orphan Train, a stunning and atmospheric novel of friendship, passion, and art, inspired by Andrew Wyeth’s mysterious and iconic painting Christina’s World.

“Later he told me that he’d been afraid to show me the painting. He thought I wouldn’t like the way he portrayed me: dragging myself across the field, fingers clutching dirt, my legs twisted behind. The arid moonscape of wheatgrass and timothy. That dilapidated house in the distance, looming up like a secret that won’t stay hidden.”

To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best known American paintings of the twentieth century.

As she did in her beloved smash bestseller Orphan Train, Christina Baker Kline interweaves fact and fiction in a powerful novel that illuminates a little-known part of America’s history. Bringing into focus the flesh-and-blood woman behind the portrait, she vividly imagines the life of a woman with a complicated relationship to her family and her past, and a special bond with one of our greatest modern artists.

Told in evocative and lucid prose, A Piece of the World is a story about the burdens and blessings of family history, and how artist and muse can come together to forge a new and timeless legacy.

This edition includes a four-color reproduction of Andrew Wyeth’s Christina’s World.

my thoughts:

Wow.  Talk about a beautifully written story.  I absolutely LOVED A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline.  The writing was top notch, the characters were unforgettable, and the story was spellbinding.  I enjoyed the mix of art, history, and fiction - it blended together so perfectly.

Set in Maine during the early 1900s, this is the story of Christina Olson, the subject behind artist Andrew Wyeth's painting, Christina's World.  How cool is that?  A painting with a history that inspired Kline to write her own version of the story - pretty exciting, eh?  I just love the idea of being so inspired by art or music and having/needing to create something about it.  With this novel, Kline transports her reader to a different world, time, and place with her vivid imagery and crisp details. She paints a gripping account of friendship, history, life, and art.  Her writing is so engaging and picturesque - you can smell the country air and feel the weathered wood of the dilapidated farmhouse.  Its truly an intoxicating read.

A Piece of the World takes us through Christina's past, where we learn about her childhood, her crippling illness, her failed romantic life, and her decision to remain self-sufficient and live in her family's old home.  We learn about a determined, strong, and independent woman.  I will admit that she is unlikeable in so many ways - her attitude and demeanor are less than civil.  Yet, she finds a connection with Wyeth and the two share an unlikely friendship - he's introduced to her via his future bride, Betsy (Christina's neighbor).  Wyeth pays attention to the simple life the Olson's have chosen to live - one without any modern conveniences.  He's mesmerized by their lives and their homestead, so he paints them and their home.  And in the end he gives us, Christina's World

I absolutely LOVED this book! I enjoyed learning about the Olson's and Wyeth's friendship.  I found the characters to be unforgettable and their stories to be unputdownable.  I just loved this book in every which way.  Such a great read!

I would most definitely recommend A Piece of the World to fans of Christina Baker Kline and fans of Andrew Wyeth's art - you will fall in LOVE with this story.

Here's the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: A Piece of the World
Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!


Lark said...

So cool that Kline wrote the story behind that painting! I love art and I've always wondered about who Wyeth was painting. I will definitely have to read this one! :)

Nadia said...

Lark, I had heard of Wyeth, but didn't really know his work. Now, I do. I love the idea behind this story and the result of it. Such a great read. You will LOVE it!!

Lark said...

I've put it on hold at the library and am anxiously waiting for it to come in. :)

Nadia said...

Lark, I hope you enjoy it :) Let me know.

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

I love reading reviews like this - it gets me so excited to pick of a book! And this one sounds incredibly good!

Thanks for being a part of the tour.

Lisa said...

I agree entirely!