The Lives of the Muses: Nine Women & the Artists They Inspired (Paperback)

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All loved, and were loved by, their artists, and inspired them with an intensity of emotion akin to Eros.

In a brilliant, wry, and provocative book, National Book Award finalist Francine Prose explores the complex relationship between the artist and his muse. In so doing, she illuminates with great sensitivity and intelligence the elusive emotional wellsprings of the creative process.

Praise For…

“Rollicking … Almost too much fun to read.”
-Maureen Corrigan, NPR's Fresh Air

“Stylish writing … a clear-eyed view .. cherry-picked examples.”
-USA Today

“With elegance, eloquence and majesty, Prose has give us a glimpse of the tangled webs of art and Eros.”
-Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“Refreshing … a wonderful work of revisionist biography.”
-Kirkus Reviews

“A wonderful combination of argument and literary portraiture.”
-Wall Street Journal

“Prose has done a great service in her just reconsideration of the rather strange, complicated role of the muse.”
-San Francisco Chronicle Book Review

“Juicy reading …. a thoroughly researched, highly opinionated series of fascinating double biographies.”
-Los Angeles Times Book Review

“A supple work of cultural history.”
-Time magazine

“Sad, glamorous and entirely riveting.”

“Francine Prose humanizes nine women who, in some cases, have been idealized beyond recognition. Hurrah for real women.”
-San Francisco Chronicle

“Entertaining … Prose’s indignation, intelligence, scorching wit and critical insight have full play.”
-Washington Post Book World

“A remarkable book...piquant, intelligent, provocative--and sometimes haunting.”
-Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Prose make a remarkable case for the exceptionality of these women in their own right.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Exceptionally well researched … an elegant study.”
-Book Forum

“Lively and compassionate”
-Entertainment Weekly

“Richly drawn … Prose approaches the artist-muse relationship with respect and wonder.”
-Gotham Magazine

“Prose taps into the power of nine in this inspired book.”
-Art News

“Packed with fascinating details.”
-Columbus Dispatch

“Smooth smart and altogether engaging.”
-Atlanta Journal Constitution

Product Details
ISBN: 9780060555252
ISBN-10: 0060555254
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: October 7th, 2003
Pages: 448
Language: English