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Posted March 1, 2013
Posted November 10, 2012
I fell in love with book one, and this one is BETTER!
I fell in love with Gastien from book one. This book can be read by itself but to get the full effect, I urge you to read the first book. Caddy Rowland will forge an emotional connection between you and the characters that will only deepen with this book. I went into it hoping that things were going to be better for Gastien and I feel it was in general throughout the book. There were a few dark spots but the darkest of them all is at the end. They’re all weaved so tightly together that I feel I can’t talk about much more than was given to you in the synopsis without spoiling the book. I can tell you this though; I was angry, and this is the first time I’ve ever been this angry at a character in a book. To me, what Gastien’s son does at the end is absolutely unforgiveable. Sympathizers will agree and people who haven’t read the first book will probably disagree. This series is beautiful, dark and a bit rough. So be sure you know what you’re getting into when you read it. As with the book before, there are some very adult themes.
Thank you to Caddy Rowland for allowing me to review this book. It in no way influenced my review.
Posted March 23, 2012
This is book two in the Gastien Beauchamp series, taking place from 1855 – 1899. This book starts with a lot of review of the previous book. Of course, I recommend you read Part 1, The Cost of The Dream. But if you don’t, you will get the basics of it throughout this book. I must say, I enjoyed this book much more than the first. While both books are dark and portray a very honest look at Gastien’s life, this one had a bit more lighthearted moments that made it better for me.
Gastien is now an adult, living in his studio in Montemartre. He is pretty much the same as he was previously. My views of him as a person are not terrific. I think he is selfish and immature, and a bit of a whiner when he doesn’t get his way. He fills his life with superficial women, and this always leaves him looking for something more – as he is constantly reaffirming he does not want to be in love. Sex, painting, drugs, and drinking…these are all things that Gastien is a happy and willing slave to. Frankly, it began to be a bit tiresome to constantly have to deal with his insecurities and troubles that his addictions caused him. Just as it is in the real world when you have to deal with a self centered addict.
I found this an enjoyable read for the most part. On the down side, there was a lot of repetition that I could have done without. The thing is, this story is not sugarcoated. Gastien group up relatively poor, left home with nothing, went to the “big city” and he knows what scraping bottom feels like. He was so low he had to scrape bottom just to look up. He got a few breaks here and there, made many sacrifices for his one true love (his art) and landed in a pretty good situation in Montemartre. You get to see his whole life, and not just the good parts.
He finds love, real true love, in a young girl named Sophie. This relationship is not without its troubles, but they have open and honest communication, and they make it work. When they first meet, he is flustered and makes slips like asking for a kisskey instead of a whiskey one night at the pub when she is a waitress. These little details really add to the story of their romance. It doesn’t happen with a flash bang like in shorter novels, this romance is nurtured and grown until it becomes the rare flower that it is.
There is quite the cast of characters in this book, and you really get a chance to know them. One of my favorites is Gastien’s best friend, Mic. Mic is… well, after being Gastien’s friend for decades he should qualify for sainthood. In fact, there is a scene where Mic is reminiscing and you get a quick view of Gastien from his eyes, from the first moment he saw him on the street. This was so touching and beautiful, it really shows that family is indeed not just the people who you share blood with, but rather those who you share life with.
There were a few surprises in this book that I didn’t see coming, and I’ll leave those unspoiled. Lets just say that in this book you should be prepared for the parade of emotions you are going to feel with Gastien and his choices. There is definite happiness, a touch of romance, a splash and a rub of lust, and there is sorrow. Like I’ve said before, I am not necessarily sure this is a “feel good” book. This is a gritty and raw look at the life of a young man who has convictions and sticks to them no matter the cost. It’s a good story, and if you like historical fiction, I think you will enjoy it.
Posted February 22, 2012
I was asked to review “Gastien: From Dream to Destiny” when I was done reading it. If you haven’t read the first book in the series, I highly recommend doing so before tackling this one. I enjoyed this book much better than the first; it wasn’t as emotionally draining which made it easier to read. Though there is more romance than in the first book, it’s very different from the typical romance novel. This is a very sexually charged book which may put some readers off, but it’s well worth reading. I have love/hate emotions for Gastien. I had to remind myself that his views on subjects were that of a man from his time period and not a modern day guy. I can’t help but admire his honesty, originality, and strength but his behaviors are appalling. He’s a drug addicted alcoholic with monogamy issues. He’ll act irresponsible one moment then turn around and be tender and caring. His background makes some of his actions understandable be he needed to grow up sooner than he did. I enjoyed that Caddy wrote this story to span Gastien’s entire life once meeting Sophie. That may seem like a lot to fit in one book but she hits the highlights. I imagine the missing years would have been boring. Sophie is a one of a kind woman. Her love for Gastien is so immense that she’s able to accept all his flaws despite her family’s disapproval and hatred. I liked seeing Gastien fall in love; it was very comical in the beginning. I was surprised that their relationship lasted. I thought for sure Sophie would get tired of Gastien’s infidelity and immaturity. I enjoyed seeing Gastien as a father as well. I could feel the love he had for his son even if he wasn’t the best at showing it. He truly tried to be what he thought a father was but it was predictable that he would end up disappointing his son. As their son got older he became a very unlikable character. He was a snotty, selfish, brat who could never see past other people’s opinions and dislike for his father to see all the good in him. I thought after Gastien confided his past to his son that would make him more understanding towards his father, but he didn’t seem to care. The ending was unexpected and I cried for Gastien’s pain. Caddy was able to write a beautiful conclusion for Gastien’s story but left me wondering how she would continue this series. I was able to see how with the brief preview of the third book. I give “Gastien: From Dream to Destiny” 5/5 stars. Sophie and Gastien have entered the realm of epic romance couples. They prove that true love is unexpected, unconditional, passionate, and flawedWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 29, 2012
You will fall in love with Gastien and Sofie as I did. You can feel the joys, the pains, the anxiety and all things that they go thru in life. Like the first book, it draws you in and it is hard to put down, it is addicting. You become immersed in Gastien’s life and live the entire emotional roller coaster with him. I highly recommend this book. I am looking forward to learning more in book 3. The book can definitely stand on its own and Gastien will stick with me for a very long time, much like Gone with the Wind.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 16, 2012
This book definitely continues on from the first book in the series.
Gastien continues to grow into an adult, with many challenges being presented both personally and in his art work. I love that Gastien continues to grow making him such a loveable character that at time you empathize with him, but at others you detest him just as much.
The author continues with the amazing story of Gastien being an artist in 19th century France, bringing to life the struggles that artist's faced when they started out. I found that I was even more captivated by Gastien and all the other characters in this book than I was in the first. I was so engrossed in everything going on that I read the whole book in a day, laughing, crying and feeling compassion for all of the characters especially Gastien himself. I must admit throughout this whole book I found that I experienced every emotion there was and I was emotionally drained by the end, but emotionally drained in a good way.
Again the author helpfully gave a glossary at the front of the book with all the French translations to both words used in the first book as well as new words and phrases used within this book. She managed to integrate both languages so well that most of the time you did not notice that both French and English were being used.
I would definitely love to continue on in this series and read book three, in order to find out how everything pans out for the rest of the characters. Although I can’t giveaway why, as I wouldn’t want to spoil the ending for those adults out there that want to discover Gastien and his travels through 18th Century France.
Posted January 9, 2012
absolutely loved Gastien Part 1 and never thought I that Caddy Rowland could write a second book as good as the first. I have loved Gastien's story from the very beginning. I have laughed with, cried with, and felt like punching the different characters in these books. I hate to see Gastien's story come to an end but I can't wait to experience the story of Tristan Michel. Caddy Rowland has done such an amazing job with these two books I know that I will ALWAYS make it a point to read EVERYTHING that she writes. Caddy is master of the roller coaster of emotions. I finished reading this book at about 2:30 AM and I honestly thought that I was going to wake my husband because I was litterally bawling! The whole book isn't sad though. It's the same as the first, like I said, a roller coaster. It will have you crying one minute and laughing out loud the next.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 16, 2011
I like a good love story and this books story is like no other. I fell in love with Gastien and Sophie. I couldn't put the book down and I'm hoping there will be a book 3.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.