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Best Historical Fiction Novels about Claude Monet & the Impressionism artists

Are you a historical fiction bookworms? Do you love the revolutionary French Impressionists? If yes, then this page is for you! I have listed the best historical fiction novels ever written about the impressionists and post-impressionists. Lie on your bed, or on your favorite couch & allow yourself to time travel through these books into the art world of these painters.

The novels will take you to the legendary Montmartre where artists, writers and bohemians gathered in flamboyant and often degenerate cafes and bars.

Maurice Utrillo Painting - Montmartre
Maurice Utrillo Painting – Montmartre during the Belle Epoque Era

Belle Epoque Paris & the Emergence of Impressionism

The era of the French Impressionism movement is an especiallly fascinating one. It was the period between the terrible Franco-Prussian War and the devastating First World War (1871- 1914).

During these 40 years, Europe celebrated political stability & a feeling of optimism. It was the beginning of large scale industrialization and the era of public train transport. Europe was rebuilding itself and flourishing. The city dwellers could now take train trips to the easily accessible coastal villages of Normandy. This period era is known as “the Golden Era” or in French “La Belle Epoque“.

It was during the “Belle Epoque” that the French impressionism movement emerged. These revolutionary artists, such as Monet, Manet, Renoir & others were unknowingly, paving the way to modern art. They turned away from traditional art, causing an uproar in the art world.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir Painting of Paris during the Belle Epoque Era
Pierre-Auguste Renoir Painting of Paris during the Belle Epoque Era

In reality, the journey of the impressionism artists was not an easy one! The art world did not know how to digest the “crude” and “colorful” artworks of these painters. For a very long time, the art establishments, critics and patrons rejected, criticized and scorned their paintings. They could barely cover the costs of their painting materials and many lived in utter poverty.

The Best Novels about the Impressionists in Belle Epoque Paris

Below is a list of some of the best historical fiction novels about the Impressionism and Post-Impressionism painters. Page by page the book will immerse you into the atmosphere of 19th century Paris during the Belle Epoque. You will meet these young emerging artists who were still unknown and often struggling!

These novels will take you to the dilapidated hill-top village of Montmartre. It was here where painters, dancers, writers, actors and musicians flocked to from near & afar, hoping to make their mark in the art world.

The Best Historical Fiction Novels
Lose Yourself in the best historical fiction novels
Painting by Jean-Honoré Fragonard 

You will read the stories about Degas, Chagall,  Toulouse-Lautrec, Van GoghMonet, Morisot & many more. Here in Montmartre, they shared ideas, developed new painting styles, started avant garde art movements & made invaluable artistic contacts.

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Get comfortable & allow yourself to be transported back in time into 19th century Paris with the below historical fiction novels:

Tell me of your best historical fiction books that are not on my list! Write to me!

Please send me your comments & recommendations of any art historical fiction novels and great biographies about the impressionists not on my list.

I look forward to hearing from you!