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The Love-Artist

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A darkly brilliant first novel that imagines a missing chapter in the life of Ovid, the most popular author of his day. Why do only two lines survive of his play "Medea", reputedly his most passionate work? Between the known details of the poet's life and these enigmas, Alison has interpolated a haunting drama of passion and psychological manipulation.

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A darkly brilliant first novel that imagines a missing chapter in the life of Ovid, the most popular author of his day. Why do only two lines survive of his play "Medea", reputedly his most passionate work? Between the known details of the poet's life and these enigmas, Alison has interpolated a haunting drama of passion and psychological manipulation. Why was Ovid, the most popular poet of his day, banished from Rome? Why do only two lines survive of his play Medea, reputedly his most passionate, most accomplished work? Between the known details of Ovid's life and these enigmas, Jane Alison has created a haunting drama of psychological manipulation, and an ingenious meditation on love, art and immortality.<P>When Ovid encounters a woman who embodies the fictitious creations of his soon-to-be published Metamorphoses, he is enchanted, obsessed, and inspired. Part healer, part witch, she seems to be myth come to life, and Ovid lures her away from her home by the Black Sea to Rome. But the inexorable pull of ambition leads him to make a Faustian bargain with fate that will betray his newfound muse.

Specifications

Publisher
Farrar Straus & Giroux
Book Format
Hardcover
Number of Pages
242
Author
Jane Alison
ISBN-13
9780374231798
Publication Date
April, 2001
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
8.56 x 5.76 x 0.94 Inches
ISBN-10
0374231796

Customer Reviews

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1-3 of 3 reviews

Ovid, the Roman poet, ...

Ovid, the Roman poet, was exiled to Tomis on the Black Sea for what he says in his "Tristia": Carmen et error [A poem and a mistake]. From this ambiguity, scholars and historians through the years have tried to puzzle out why he was exiled. Alison presents us with her speculation, giving us a lush, sensuous tale of Ovid and a mysterious "witch", Xenia, he meets on vacation on the Black Sea [a more salubrious part than his final home]. They fall in love and he takes her to Rome. He begins writing a tragedy of Medea with her as muse and model for the priestess. Xenia feels he has betrayed her with another woman. Jealous of his patroness, Julia, of the imperial family, she exacts a horrible vengeance. I could SEE all scenes before me vividly, despite the author's sometimes purple prose. Besides the jealousy and betrayal, a main theme is the permanence of art and the artist [in this case Ovid.] Will he always be remembered, he keeps asking her. The novel took awhile to pick up steam, but finally rolled on swiftly to its inexorable conclusion. This novel is the expression of the inner life of its characters. Recommended. On rereading in November 2016, I lowered my rating to 3***.

This is a quiet nove...

This is a "quiet" novel, one that involves a lot of contemplation. My theory is that if your novel involves a lot of thinking/contemplation/dealing with something, then it better be about the most exciting people ever. And this one is about at least interesting people, Ovid and a witch. Somehow, it's still kind of boring.

This is a quiet nove...

This is a "quiet" novel, one that involves a lot of contemplation. My theory is that if your novel involves a lot of thinking/contemplation/dealing with something, then it better be about the most exciting people ever. And this one is about at least interesting people, Ovid and a witch. Somehow, it's still kind of boring.

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Electrode, Comp-276501138, DC-prod-dfw8, ENV-prod-a, PROF-PROD, VER-30.0.3, SHA-fe0221a6ef49da0ab2505dfeca6fe7a05293b900, CID-812a7fee-d4f-16e656f75ec3bc, Generated: Wed, 13 Nov 2019 15:43:53 GMT