Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron

Every once and a while a novel comes along that is so well written and has a plot so stunning that it takes your breath away. This is one of those novels.

The narrative alternates between the present day story of Sera, a Manhattan gallery owner who has been haunted by a painting she saw as a child, and Adele, the subject of that painting. Sera is surprised to have her employee find a masterful copy of the painting and flies to California to meet its owner and try to find the original. There, she is embroiled in a family conflict as the painting is at the center of a hundred million dollar inheritance. In the middle is William, the manager of the family business. He is desperate to find the owner of the original painting to save his family's wealth and heritage.

Woven into the present day narrative is the story of Adele, premiere violinist of Vienna at the beginning of World War II. How she ultimately came to be painted with a shaved head and a number tattooed on her arm is a compelling story.

There is a little romance included as Sera and William are attracted to each other. Both have been severely hurt, however, so their relationship is rocky. Since part of the novel takes us back to WW II, we learn much about music and its place in the Nazi concentration camps. Cambron gives us the historical background for the novel in a note at the end of the book. A great deal of the historical part of the book is based on actual events.

This is a very well crafted and well written novel. The historical part of the novel is very moving. Many of the characters in the book, past and present, must rely on their Christian faith to survive. A very good novel, I highly recommend it. I am amazed this is a debut novel. I will certainly be looking for more from this author.

I am taking part in a blog tour of this book and you can read other reviews here.

Kristy I. Cambron has been fascinated with the WW II era since hearing her grandfather's stories of the war. She has an art history degree from Indiana University. She writes
WW II and Regency era fiction and has placed first in the 2013 NTRWA Great Expectations and 2012 FCRW Beacon contests, and is a 2013 Laurie finalist. She makes her home in Indiana with her husband and their three sons. You can find out more at http://kristycambron.com/.

Thomas Nelson, 336 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book through the Litfuse Publicity Group for the purpose of an independent and honest review.
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