The Book: You may not recognize the name Eva Gouel but you may be familiar with her image as rendered by Pablo Picasso during his early Cubist period (see the painting Woman in an Armchair).
Anne Girard's Madame Picasso tells the story of how Eva, a young costumer, met the newly famous painter and became his lover and muse in the Golden Age of Paris in the years before World War I. Many reviewers note that the people and places of turn-of-the-century France come alive in Girard's capable hands, from the back stage of the Moulin Rouge to the beauty of the countryside, from fellow artists and dancers to the likes of Gertrude Stein.
Madame Picasso is a love story not only of Eva and Picasso but also of the era, with its new technology and astonishing new art. Relying on firsthand accounts (mostly correspondence), Girard sheds light on the woman who won Picasso's heart just as his career began to take flight. Although their time together was tragically short, Picasso proclaimed his feelings for the younger woman by including the words I love Eva in a number of his works.
To learn more about author Anne Girard, be sure sure to visit her website, where you can see a photo of Eva and learn about the birth of the novel. For more information and news, like her Facebook page and follow her on Twitter. Harlequin, the publisher, talked with Girard about Madame Picasso, which you can listen to on YouTube.
The Giveaway: Thanks to Harlequin, I'm excited to be able to offer one of my readers with a U.S. mailing address a fabulous prize pack to celebrate the recent release of Anne Girard's Madame Picasso. One lucky reader will receive a copy of the novel plus three movies to help set the mood: Moulin Rouge, Midnight in Paris, and Gatsby.
All you have to do to enter for a chance to win is to fill out the form. I'll pick a winner on September 15 using a random number generator. Once the winner has been confirmed, I'll erase all personal information. Good luck!