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The Gauguin Connection (Book 1) (Genevieve Lenard) Kindle Edition
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From the Author
Genevieve Lenard series:
1. The Gauguin Connection
2. The Dante Connection
3. The Braque Connection
About the Author
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 432 pages
- Language: : English
- Publication date : August 13, 2012
- ASIN : B008X3NCRE
- File size : 648 KB
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #6,227 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Even with the plot focus, I had trouble staying with the story. Everything is about gathering lists and comparing the data on them. That's it. And the bad guy ends up being predictable. All of the characters are flat and static. Jenny is the main protagonist, but needs regular "saving" from the strong and powerful men in her life. Good lord. And then, after all these men's assurances that they'd never let any harm to come her, they get to arguing (AGAIN) and lose sight of her at the critical moment of danger.
I was really hoping to learn something new and interesting, such as about the art of Gauguin. Or even about the art of forgery. But there were almost no narrative details of any kind to build out this story in any way. Maybe we could have gotten to know the dead girl a bit more? Or maybe more about Jenny's past? Or Vinny's? And why is Manny just angry all the time, even to the very end of the story?
I will give this two stars -- it has a core of an idea that could work with better writing.
I was uncertain whether I wanted to continue with this series. Seeing that there are now 10 books in the series, I don't think I'll continue with it. The writing isn't strong enough to support 10 books of what, at the end of book #1, starts to feel like just a clever little plot device - useful as a come-on, but dropped whenever the plot needs to advance beyond Genevieve's work room (which is often).
Opening chapters were so boring that I just couldn't finish it. The *gimmick* of the autistic character was annoying in its portrayal. Author seemed to feel the need to beat the reader over the head with constantly. It got tiresome REAL fast. Story pacing was soooo slooow, in part because the author was so busy banging on about Genevieve's autistic routines and limitations, in part because all the *action* was taking place mostly inside her head, with a bit of silly dialogue here and there that really didn't serve to advance the storyline to the point where you could tell what the storyline WAS.
I didn't feel invested, or interested, in the characters at all. Wasn't motivated to read on. And I rarely put down a book once I've started it.
All that said it is a decent art mystery but could have been a great art mystery. Even with a good plot I would not read the next book just because of the writing.
Strasbourg as a setting is completely irrelevant as most of the action takes place indoors in stilted English. Ryan has done a disservice to both artists and people with autism in this horribly researched novel.
Top reviews from other countries
Got that off my chest now......it was highly interesting learning how she managed to cope when her world was turned upside-down due to a case she's ordered to work on. She does so many things she wouldn't usually do and it was very funny in places as well. I really like both Colin and Vinnie and Phillip, her boss, is a prince. I hope they're all going to feature in her next adventure which I already have downloaded. One line near the end featuring another guy called Manny was so touching it also made me quite sniffy....
I did find myself a little bogged down in the final quarter as it was getting very convoluted and I needed to flick back 'n' forth a few times as I was getting a little confused as to how many artists there were, etc. This passage totally baffled me-"I frowned at Piros' name in the box with the extra angry lines surrounding it. His connection to this case was tenuous and it was easy enough to find him. Piros, on the other hand, was exceptionally adept at remaining an enigma"......I'm assuming the wrong name was used twice when it shouldn't have been.
Now errors.....way too many apostrophe ones nobody spotted and corrected, especially where plurals are concerned-226's/VIP's and every time, save one, she missed it out on weapons' theft !!! BUT, massive kudos for being the only author I've spotted to get it right on hornets' nest !! I made a special note of that because everyone usually gets that one wrong for some strange reason.
This line had an extra word-"I'd had only had academic knowledge" and this one lost one-"It wasn't a one-man job, so I asked Vinnie's help." Yet this passage makes no sense because one word has been misplaced or missed or something. Whatever it is, it's wrong as it stands-"One word combined all the loose bits of information to a state of completion where all my observations, analyses and theories into one single conclusion."
There was used and not their at one point and boar and not bore. She has a habit of writing born and not borne, too. Then gentleman and not gentlemen and very annoyingly, and carelessly, a big event they planned to attend on a Saturday was suddenly talked about occurring on a Friday !! Men's wear is usually just the one word-menswear and enveloped was written in place of envelope.
I hope she'll invest in a better editor or proofreader in the next story as these mistakes really ought to have been picked up if I managed to spot them !!
When a dead female artist turns up with a strip from a Gaugin painting in her coat, Genevieve's talents are in demand. She also needs to help Manny and Leon uncover the truth about this and a number of other young artists' murders, believed to be carried out with stolen Europcorps weapons that are untraceable and all linked to Art auctions carried out on Russian-registered ships.
Who is Colin Frey and how does he come into Genevieve's flat - and her life?
What is his career/real lifestyle? What is the connection between Colin, stolen/returned artworks and the murdered artists? How does Genevieve react when stressed? Who attacks her at her home? Who becomes her live-in bodyguard? Who is Francine and how does she help Genevieve and Colin in their search? How is the master-crook unmasked?
Once you start the Genevieve Lenard series, of which this is the exciting first novel, you're sure to be hooked on the interesting way her 'handicap' becomes a positive inspiration for those she works and is induced to socialise with. I heartily recommend it to the intelligent fan of murder-mysteries with an unusual feisty protagonist leading a major investigation.
I loved this story and I'm sure you will too - grab a copy today and be sure to tell all your friends not to miss it either!
When I began reading there seemed to be a lot of repetition around Genevieve's condition, such as how she disliked being touched. I appreciate that the novel is written from her viewpoint but I felt this began to intrude on the plotline because the points were made so often I felt that Estelle was trying to teach us about autism not tell a story. There also seemed to be inconsistencies such as Genevieve's ability to use her computer for research but not understanding other aspects of computer use.
The detail around communication difficulties made me wonder how much research had been done - as an English reader I found Vinnie's need to use slang constantly was not credible. When I reached the section about an injection of Midazolam I began to wonder how much Estelle relied on inaccurate information rather than factual research - I have nursed patients undergoing medical procedures when midazolam has been used to provide sedation and amnesia and assure you that such an injection does not cause paralysis and memory is lost for the period whilst the drug is working (especially as it was queried that Genevieve might have been given an overdose).
At 45% I have given up and deleted this from my library.
Genevieve the main character also known as Doctor Lenard is a face reader for simple terms, who is a genius who has no social skills other than the ones she has taught herself, through observation, has four new characters come into her life at the some time she is investigating a series of art crimes. So you are continually in her heads as she attempts to solve the crimes and adjust to people in her life that want to help and befriend her. Truly a joyful and educational read of our behavioural patterns. A must read
"The Gauguin Connection" is the first book in Genevieve Lenard series. Genevieve is a psychology graduate who specialises in nonverbal communication and behaviour. She also has a form of autism - inter-personal relationships can be tricky and, when panicked, she calms herself by writing one of Mozart's works. (This can lead to her for zoning out for hours at a time). Genevieve works for Rousseau and Rousseau, an insurance firm based in Strasbourg that provides cover for extremely expensive artwork. Her boss, Phillip Rousseau, is pretty much the only person she has a close relationship with - he's able to act as a buffer between her and other people.
"The Gauguin Connection" sees Genevieve working in a somewhat different sphere to normal. Manfred Millard, a close friend of Phillip, is a senior official at the European Defence Agency - and he needs help. A girl has been found murdered in Strasbourg by a Russian, who arrived in France with a number of apparently legitimate identities. The murder weapon had been stolen from Eurocorps. Obviously there's a suspicion that someone at a high level in Eurocorps is involved. However, the EDA has also been implicated. Worryingly for Rousseau and Rousseau, a strip of a painting was found on the murder victim's body - specifically The White Bowl, by Paul Gauguin, which is insured by the company. As the owner hasn't reported it missing, Phillip is concerned they may actually have insured a high-quality forgery. However, the first concern is the murder investigation and - because of the possibility of insiders at both Eurocorps and the EDA - an outsider needs to be brought in. That outsider, despite her great reluctance, is going to be Genevieve.
I did find it a little difficult to take parts of the story seriously. (The relationship Genevieve formed so quickly with Colin, in particular, was something I found hard to swallow - given her difficulties in dealing with people). I was a little disappointed with how little Strasbourg featured - so much of the book was took place indoors, it really could have been set anywhere. However, it was largely an enjoyable and easily read book - I could see myself trying another couple of books in the series.