Review of “Georgia: A Novel of Georgia O’Keeffe” by Dawn Tripp

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Wow. Dawn Tripp can write!

“Here I am again. Held down, held back, in a power struggle with some arrogant man, his ego and incompetence that has nothing to do with my art. It’s like they’re all together in some maddening conspiracy to make me good enough, but not good enough to topple them.”

Georgia: A Novel of Georgia O’Keeffe  is a beautifully written account of Georgia O’Keefe’s life. As a work of historical fiction, it’s all it should be. The settings, from Lake George to Taos are vividly rendered. The research is obviously there. The real beauty, though, is the way the characters become known to us. I think it must be very difficult to make a reader feel so intimately connected to the characters; especially if the characters are historical figures with bios that can be read all over the internet.

Georgia’s life with Stieglitz went from pillar to post. He was her nurturing mentor and earliest fan. She was the stability and loving home he needed. Though, at times, I was frustrated, saddened, and even enraged at his man/boy antics, it was very clear that they shared a very deep connection. She gave up so much to be with him. Or did she? What would her life, both personal and professional, have been like without him? Though we like to think the times are so very different now, women continue with many of these struggles in an effort to balance everything we need and want in our lives. We probably always will. While I loved Georgia for her strength, creativity, and perseverance,  I was most impressed with Georgia’s maturity and wisdom:

“… despite the fact that he can still make me so angry, in the end he is just a man whose sunlight is behind him.”

I love discovering an author, previously unknown to me, whose next book I’m already looking forward to.

My rating: 4.75 stars

Thank you to Random House Publishing, via NetGalley, for providing me with a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.