"C'est un tres bonlivre!" Review by: Barbara Miller, Pacific Book Review
Peter Wise has used words to the skill level of Pierre-Auguste Renoir's use of paint, creating a literary book embellishing a world, a period-piece, with complex human emotions, determination, drive and passion in his epic work. His use of language with precision, and his coy remarks of the wonderfully credible characters, is unlike much of the mundane use of verbiage we read and use today. He truly pulls the reader back in time, like the Time Machine in the H. G. Wells classic, into the mid-1800's, and drops you among the upper society in Paris, France, amidst famous people like Louis Pasteur.
When reading this book I was pleasantly transported away from modern day life, and rewarded with gaining an intimate understanding of the strength of values, fortitude and determination of Claude Bernard, holding a higher appreciation for the medical breakthroughs he now is accredited as founding.
The brilliance of Peter Wise's writing skill is truly amazing, being so presumptuously respectful of the reader's intelligence, while still explaining the fundamentals of the factual evidence portrayed in the scientific medical work. I would recommend this book for young adults as an example of excellence in technique, as well as to the seasoned historical reader; or anyone for that matter seeking entertainment while being educated.
I believe that this book is also available translated into French.
From the Author
This was a first for me. In my profession, I had already written many articles for medical and scientific journals, as well as reference and textbook chapters: all technical stuff! I had always been fascinated by Claude Bernard - scientist extraordinary. His discoveries, wisdom and principles had guided me in my career - so why not now write a novel based on his life?
I had moved to France - to retire. Could I not use the opportunity to find out more about my hero? And so I did - in Paris, in Lyon and in the Beaujolais where he spent his childhood and then some of his later life - amongst his vines. Archived material, old newspapers and books, his articles and those about him, the literature of the greats like Balzac and Flaubert and Zola: they all fuelled my enthusiasm and ideas, as did all the wonderful people - relatives, scientists and historians that I met along the way.A Matter of Doubt
began to take shape: not a biography but a biographical novel: my own personal way of representing his life - rich with discovery and elation, but also with its disappointments and traumas.
It would have an English version - and then a French translation. Amazon Kindle did the former - the Societe des Ecrivains
did the latter; and now I am content!