This title came out in July of 2019. I was intrigued by the unique premise following a series of art scandals at the start of the 1920’s in Germany where tensions are beginning to rise amidst the Nazi Party.
Here is a shortened synopsis from Goodreads:
“[Three] disparate Berlin[er]s collide when Emmeline, a young art student; Julius, an art expert; and a mysterious dealer named Rachmann all find themselves caught up in the astonishing discovery of thirty-two previously unknown paintings by Vincent van Gogh.
In the Full Light of the Sun explores the trio’s complex relationships and motivations, their hopes, their vanities, and their self-delusions—for the paintings are fakes and they are in their own ways complicit. Theirs is a cautionary tale about of the aspirations of the new Germany and a generation determined to put the humiliations of the past behind them.”
Review: Like it says in the synopsis, it follows three different story lines that are not told fluently but separate from one another. I don’t know if I really liked the way that Clare Clark did this. I felt like the three character stories were so completely different than I had trouble following the point of the story.
At one point while reading the third character (arguable the one I liked the most) I thought I was reading a different book entirely.
The first character story was Julius who is acclaimed to be the art expert when it comes to van Gogh painting. He meets Matthias Rachmann and Emmeline naturally but then he immediately falls out of narration and we move to Emmeline.
She is telling her story about living in Berlin and struggling to make it as an artist. Emmeline is working on a couple of projects and gets accused of copying and selling fake van Gogh paintings. Both of these story lines were a bit whiny and evasive to the sub plot that was really driving the story.
Overall, I think that the style in which it was written just did not settle with me. I like the story well enough and it was definitely interesting to learn it was based on a true story, but I got lost in the middle.
Have you read this book? What did you think about it? Let me know in the comments section below.