From the author of the "wonderfully ingenious" (Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review) novel After the Crash, a thrilling tale of a murder that takes place in Claude Monet's garden and the mystery that surrounds it.
Giverny, France. During the day, the town is the home of the famous artist Claude Monet and the gardens where he painted his Water Lilies. But once the tourists have gone, there is a darker side to the peaceful French village.
This is the story of thirteen days that begin with one murder and end with another. JÃ©me Morval, a man whose passion for art was matched only by his passion for women, has been found dead in the stream that runs through the gardens. In his pocket is a postcard of Monet's Water Lilies with the words: Eleven years old. Happy Birthday.
Entangled in the mystery are three women: a young painting prodigy, the seductive village schoolteacher, and an old widow who watches over the village from a mill by the stream. All three of them share a secret. But what do they know about the discovery of JÃ©me Morval's corpse? And what is the connection to the mysterious, rumored painting of Black Water Lilies?
A gruesome murder shatters the peace in Claude Monet's picturesque hometown of Giverny in this stylish if unsubtle graphic novel adaptation of Bussi's crime novel. An elderly widow, a married schoolteacher, and a tween girl are all keeping secrets tied to the murder of a wealthy local man, which is being investigated by a pair of handsome, wisecracking policemen. The clever twist the mystery hinges on successfully translates from prose to comics, but the shallow characterizations of the trio at the center of the case ("the first was wicked, the second was a liar, and the third was selfish") prove less effective. Fanette, nearly 11 years old, loves to paint, but her inner turmoil revolves around two boys in love with her and the father she's never met. Femme-fatale Stéphanie's character design borders on pin-up—her Monet-like floral patterned dresses cling to exaggerated curves. And the elderly widow, who serves as the story's unseen narrator, harbors cruel intentions. The comics are sharply drawn and colored beautifully to pay homage to Monet's springtime palette, which sets an effective mood. Regrettably, this page-turner speeds past the women ostensibly at its center.