Nonfiction, What Shannon Read

Growing Up with the Impressionists

1I finished one book last week that I’d mostly read the previous weekend and I haven’t yet found another book I can commit to. In the meantime, though, I had checked out Growing Up with the Impressionists: The Diary of Julie Manet translated by Jane Roberts.

I’ll admit right away that I didn’t read the entire diary, but I did enjoy reading the introduction, which was such a fun window into Julie Manet and the circle of famous people who took care of her after her parents died. Julie was the daughter of Eugène Manet, brother to Edouard Manet the artist, and her mother was artist Berthe Marisot. I liked reading the history and then looking up the paintings that were mentioned.

Also, the book has me reconsidering writing a diary. I keep a “notebook,” which I have done since I was a teenager. But it’s more of a journal and half the time it’s just a bunch of messy feelings scrawled across a page in a fit. But what if I kept it as a log of my life? Not that my life is particularly interesting to an outside observer, but I often think about my future grandkids, etc. If my predecessors had written diaries, I’d definitely read them. So, food for thought, thanks to Julie Manet.

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