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The French Impressionist by Rebecca Bischoff
Publication date: December 6th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Rosemary is fifteen and gloriously free, on her own for the very first time. Part of an exchange program for aspiring artists, she arrives in sunny southern France with a single goal: she doesn’t plan to leave, ever. She wants a new life, a new family, and a new identity. But her situation, crafted from lies big and small, is precarious.
Desperate to escape haunting images from her past and a stage one helicopter parent, Rosemary struggles to hide her lack of artistic talent and a communication disorder that has tormented her all her life. She believes her dream of a new start will come true, until she unwittingly finds herself enveloped in a decades-old mystery that threatens to ruin her only chance for success. Determined to stay, Rosemary must choose whether or not she’ll tell the biggest lie of all, even if it means destroying the life of someone she cares about.
Dramatic, heartwarming, and full of teenage angst, The French Impressionist perfectly captures the struggle of those who feel they have no voice, and also shows the courage it takes to speak up and show the world who we really are.
Top 10 Favourite Films
What follows is an eclectic list of films I enjoy and watch over and over.
1. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
I love how Peter Jackson imagines Tolkien’s world of men, dwarves and elves, but this particular film remains a favorite. Why? One word: Eowyn. Best movie dialogue ever?
Witch King of Angmar: “No man can kill me.”
Eowyn: (Removes her helmet) “I am no man.”
She sticks her sword in his face. He dies. Huzzah!
2. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Why this particular one? I love all of the Harry Potter films, but this is my favorite. I love the time-turner, the saving of Buckbeak, the main characters’ awkward entrance into adolescence, and that scene where Hermione punches Malfoy in the nose. Plus I simply enjoy the overall feel of this film since things start to get edgier.
3. Strictly Ballroom
This hilarious 1990’s Australian comedy about competitive ballroom dancers has me in stitches every time. Plus, the dancing is great and the love story is sweet. Makes me want to learn the paso doble every time I watch it.
4. Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
I apparently have a thing for singling out a lone film from franchises that I love. So again, I love everything Star Wars, past and present, but this particular film wins my heart because of the building relationship between Han Solo and Leia, Luke’s Jedi training, and the introduction of Yoda, the coolest character ever. Plus, I was absolutely heart-broken in the theatre when Han got frozen in carbonite. How could they do that to him? (And me)?
5. Pride and Prejudice (BBC’s 1995 version)
Jennifer Ehle is a wonderful Lizzie, and oh, Colin Firth. He just does Mr. Darcy so well. If he hadn’t, they wouldn’t have displayed that giant “Mr. Darcy in the wet shirt” statue in Hyde Park a few years ago…
6. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Stop-motion animation defined my childhood. That lovable reindeer with the glowing nose and the elf who wanted to be a dentist always heralded the start of the holidays for me. *sigh* Good times!
7. The Sound of Music
Julie Andrews is the bomb. Period, end of story. Besides, I know all the songs and will sing them if you ask, and sometimes if you don’t ask. You’ve been warned.
The science may be iffy, but the tense plot and emotional journey of Dr. Ryan as she struggles to get back to earth had me literally on the edge of my seat and holding my breath more than once.
9. Beauty and the Beast
My favorite animated movie. A princess who loves to read? Thank you, Disney! And whoa, that library! Belle can keep her prince, I just want the books.
10. White Christmas
I stumbled upon this gem a few years ago and fell head over heels. Bing Crosby and Danny Kay are awesome, but Rosemary Clooney and Vera Ellen steal the show for me. The over-the-top song and dance routines have no equal.
Rebecca Bischoff currently resides in Idaho with her family and works as a speech-language pathologist. She loves helping others, especially kids and teenagers, discover their own unique voices and learn to share who they are with the world. When she isn’t writing, she loves to read, spend time with her kids, and make awkward attempts to learn foreign languages. She is drawn to all things both French and Italian, used bookstores, and anything made out of chocolate.
Open to US/CAN