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today 6/2/16 on aobibliosphere™ [aobibliospotlight™: A Boy Made of Blocks by Keith Stuart]

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

02 Novel Publicity review: Nuncio & the Gypsy Girl by Kristin Alexandre & illustrated by Thomas Loepp

“It is a time when one’s spirit is subdued and sad, one knows not why; when the past seems a storm-swept desolation, life a vanity and a burden, and the future but a way to death. It is a time when one is filled with vague longings; when one dreams of flight to peaceful islands in the remote solitudes of the sea, or folds his hands and says, What is the use of struggling, and toiling and worrying any more? let us give it all up.” 
- Mark Twain, The Gilded Age

Nuncio & the Gypsy Girl
it was Mark Twain who coined the term "Gilded Age." it referred to a time in American history where everything was about reform, wealth and its ostentatious display. yet beneath all the glitter and progress there was also corruption, greed and filth. people could be categorized into two distinct groups - those who had achieved great success and money and those who were struggling to obtain both by any means. 
author Kristin Kuhns Alexandre sets her story amidst this period and illustrator Thomas Loepp brings it to life through his beautiful artwork. 
Neci is a young Gypsy girl who is deeply infatuated with Ezra, a composer. Neci craves for his love and affection but Ezra resists her advances. Neci's obsession and desire to have Ezra to herself becomes more intense when she learns that Ezra has met and fallen in love with Marlene, a pianist. 
this graphic novel is the first of a series and i loved how the author gave the story an authentic feel to it by placing her main characters alongside known historical figures like Orville and Wilbur Wright, Charles Kettering and Elbert Hubbard. 
at first, i found the illustrations quite dark but after i read the story twice and looked at the pictures closely, they felt and looked right. the drawings reflected not only the characters' emotions but also the time in which they lived. pastel colors are visible here and there but they blend and are gilded with black and gray tones. 
the contrast is striking and just perfect for the whole story. images of an eye - an all-seeing one and the dark  heavy lines that are evident throughout the book also heighten the mystery that seems to lurk behind Neci. 
the ending was dramatic and tense at the same time. it made me wonder who Neci really is, what her intentions are and how things would turn out for her, Ezra and Marlene.  
all in all, Nuncio & the Gypsy Girl was an exciting read and i recommend it to anyone who loves reading about history with a dash of intrigue and romance.
*Nuncio & the Gypsy Girl in the Gilded Age is available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. for more information about Kristin Kuhns Alexandre and her work, please visit her website and follow her on Twitter. 
my personal rating is:
Nuncio & the Gypsy Girl in the Gilded Age contains material not suitable for younger readers 13 and under. 

Disclosure of Material Connection: i received a copy of Nuncio & the Gypsy Girl from the author through Novel Publicityi did not receive any payment in exchange for this review nor was i obligated to write a positive one. all opinions expressed here are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, the book's publisher and publicist or the readers of this review. this disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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