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Lisette's List

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  5,469 ratings  ·  899 reviews
From Susan Vreeland, bestselling author of such acclaimed novels as Girl in Hyacinth Blue, Luncheon of the Boating Party, and Clara and Mr. Tiffany, comes a richly imagined story of a woman’s awakening in the south of Vichy France—to the power of art, to the beauty of provincial life, and to love in the midst of war.

In 1937, young Lisette Roux and her husband, André, move
Kindle Edition, 433 pages
Published August 26th 2014 by Random House (first published 2014)
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Bonnie Thank you very much for answering Patricia and Kathy. We are a start up Book Club. So far we have read The Nightingale, and The Race For Paris. In Jan…moreThank you very much for answering Patricia and Kathy. We are a start up Book Club. So far we have read The Nightingale, and The Race For Paris. In January we discuss The Lake House. I appreciate background before I pick the next book. Let me know any your Book Club has had lively discussions about. (less)

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Average rating 3.80  · 
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 ·  5,469 ratings  ·  899 reviews

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Angela M
Aug 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a little girl in the orphanage in Paris, Lisette’s love of art is born as she looks at a painting of the Madonna and Child. “How a human being, not a god, could re-create reality so accurately, how the deep blue of her cloak and the rich red of her dress could put me, a young orphan without a sou to her name in touch with all that is fine and noble, how such beauty could stir something in me so deep that must have been what Sister Marie Pierre called soul – such things drenched me with wonder ...more
Stephanie Renee
May 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received an Advanced Readers Copy of this novel. Lisette’s List was a thoughtful and moving read for me, with a scene mid-book that touched on the universal, giving me reason for pause and deep contemplation, what all great literature strives for. Vreeland’s mastery of language and descriptive images are on every page. The first word that comes to mind after reading the book: Exquisite. I loved Vreeland’s characterization of Parisian and Provençal life, along with learning about Marc Chagall a ...more
Lisette and her husband Andrè move to Provence when summoned by his grandfather, who is in poor health. Only he seems fine, and is intent on teaching them some appreciation of the paintings he had long ago acquired from some up-and-coming French artists -- maybe these sound familiar -- Cèzanne and Picasso. Lisette is unhappy with the deception that forced her to leave her beloved Paris but soon learns to love Provence as well and makes some good friends. She also learns much about art, as do we ...more
ETA: I feel I need to clarify what exactly I found “too cute”. What I found too cute was the fictional story crafted by the author, of course not the historical events. In no way is WW2 cute. In addition I found the historical events, although not inaccurate, without depth. So much more could have been said!


OK, dear friends, do you want the truth? Friends recommended this book to me, and I don't want to hurt any feelings, but this book did not work for me at
Deborah Ideiosepius
In this story we follow the life of Lisette, a young Parisian woman who is forced to relocate to a small Provence village when her husband's only living relative, an old grandfather who reared him, writes to tell them he is failing and needs Andre to care for him. This is a blow to Lisette who had been about to follow her passion for art by getting a job in a gallery. She consoles herself with the knowledge that Pascal owns seven paintings by famous artists since he used to work in the ochre min ...more
Fred Shaw
Aug 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What makes this historical novel so unique from all others I’ve read, is the inclusion of the artists Pisarro, Cezanne, Chagall and Picasso, and the stories of their work, subjects and family. Around this storyline is wrapped the account of two Parisians, Lisette and Andre, who travel South from Paris to the village of Roussillons, to care for Andre’s grandfather, Pascal. Pascal’s health is failing and wants to share with Andre his life’s anecdotes as an ochre pigment salesman and his relationsh ...more
Aug 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fall in love with this novel of late 1930’s Provence!

Suffused with the colors of Provence in the late thirties to forties, Lisette’s List tells the enchanting, sometimes deeply sad and always moving story of a young Parisian girl Lisette who agrees reluctantly to move to the south of France with her husband to live with his weakening grandfather. The old Pascal has stories to tell of his memories of Pissarro and Cézanne, both of whom he knew; he also has five gorgeous paintings to leave them. Bu
Connie G
Art lovers and Francophiles will enjoy "Lisette's List". Fictional characters Lisette and Andre Roux left Paris to live in Roussillon de Provence to care for Andre's ailing grandfather, Pascal. Cosmopolitan Lisette misses Paris, but becomes very fond of Pascal who tells her stories about Pissarro and Cezanne. Pascal had worked in the ochre mines and later sold paints made from the ochre pigments. He made frames for the artists who paid him with their paintings.

When World War II breaks out Andre
“When a man finds a place he loves, he can endure the unspeakable.” Vreeland writes pleasant books based around artists and paintings; years ago I enjoyed her Girl in Hyacinth Blue and The Passion of Artemisia. In this latest novel, Lisette Roux and her woodcarver husband, André, move from Paris to the small village of Roussillon, Provence in 1937 to care for his ailing grandfather, Pascal. It’s a tough adjustment for Lisette, a socialite and aspiring gallery assistant.

Pascal, who sold paints an
Meg - A Bookish Affair
4.5 stars. "Lisette's List" is the latest release by the fabulous historical fiction author, Susan Vreeland. Vreeland is definitely on my list of authors whose books I'm definitely going to want to get my hands on it as soon as I can whenever they come out. I very much liked some of her other releases and believe that "Lisette's List" is a very good follow-on to her other works. In this book, Lisette left the glittering world of Paris behind in order to go with her husband to a small French town ...more
Sep 20, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved Vreeland's Luncheon of the Boating Party, so when I found this by chance in the library, I scooped it up. And I did read it cover to cover, and I did love learning about painting in the first half of the twentieth century through the lens of small-town Provence daily life, and what WW II was like in Vichy France. That said, this book had a Serious Mansplaining Problem. If Donald Trump looked into a magic mirror and asked, "Who is the mansplainiest one of all?"--an honest magic ...more
Sue Vreeland's LISETTE'S LIST is essentially written on two levels and while it does an admirable job in recounting certain aspects of WWII as well as presenting an art history lesson focusing on the fate of paintings by Pissarro, Cezanne, Picasso and Chagall during the German occupation of France it is not as effective in fulfilling expectations in the areas of plot intensity nor in character motivation and development.

Lisette, the title character, is a Parisian girl raised in a Catholic orphan
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I love Provence, Impressionist art, and historical fiction, and thought I would really enjoy this book. However, while the general thread of the heroine learning about artists from a man who used to sell paints and who received a few precious paintings from Cezanne and others was intriguing, the plot grew less believable and more contrived as the book went on. Further, the characters did not draw me in--i felt almost no emotion through their triumphs and tragedies. Thanks, Netgalley, for an adva ...more
A spectrum of colors created from ocher, mined and mixed to create a palette for Cezanne. Lavender growing wild and scenting the Provencal village of Roussillon. Fresh goat cheese and eggs in a creamy omelette. Gritty marzipan on your tongue. An old man's voice, telling stories that stitch together two centuries of art. All of the senses are engaged in Lisette's List, a novel about the power of art to engage the human instincts to survive, learn, and grow.

Lisette and André Roux love Paris, wher
Jun 12, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I received an advanced copy of this book and was excited to read a novel that combined art and a strong woman set against WWII. The story started out wish a burst of energy as Lisette attempts to assimilate to a small town having becoming very accustomed to the te glittering life of a Parisian wife. When she learns her husband's grandfather lured them to the town under false pretenses she is oddly not upset. He imparts his love of art to her and regales her with stories of his interactions with ...more
Aug 16, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is my third novel by Vreeland and the one I least enjoyed. Lisette is bequeathed a collection of paintings by her grandfather-in-law who forces Lisette and her husband to swear to protect them. Fearful that these masterpieces will be stolen by invading Nazis, her husband hides them before heading off to war. When he does not return after the war, Lisette makes recovering them her personal mission. Vreeland describes these pieces of art in gushing detail and likewise this village in southern ...more
May 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I loved this book. I love this author. I have read all of her books and thoroughly enjoyed every one of them. I would definitely recommend any of her books. Even if you do not know a lot about art or art history, it doesn't matter. She brings paintings to life. I feel like I understand more about art when I'm finished. In this book, she delves into pigments and the progression of different styles, starting with Cezanne and Pissaro and ending with Chagall. Instead of focusing on a single painting ...more
This is Historical Fiction set during WWII. I liked this one. The author has a passion for art and she writes beautifully about it and the effects it can have on lives, especially when times were dark.

I liked the characters in this book. The first half was my favorite. The second half wasn't as character driven as the first, but it had a creative flair I could appreciate. It was about a hunt for hidden art in the MC's French village. Some of the events were a little too convenient (and highly i
Feb 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Meh... Pleasant enough but not engrossing. Maybe I have read/seen too many WWII stories as well as my own family's members histories to be impressed by yet one more. But since I like art and art history (this is why I had chosen this book in the first place), I loved Vreeland's take on Chagall, Pissarro, Cezanne and other French artists. Learned a few interesting tidbits about Chagall and his wife. Loved the cute (and correct) use of a couple Russian words in appropriate context, and they were e ...more
Susan Vreeland has written a warm and compelling WW2-era story about a group of seven important 20th Century French paintings and the family that treasured them.

The paintings share center stage with the narrator, Lisette and as her understanding and appreciation of the works of art grows, she matures as a character and a woman. I was totally wrapped up in Lisette's narrative; her ability to adapt to an alien environment, live through substantial loss, and eventually emerge stronger, was interest
Jennifer Prim
Apr 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Have read the first three chapters; so far, so love!!
Andrea Cox
This book was such a love letter to art and France and the survivors of WWII. The passion for these things in the author came alive on every page. I wish it had been cleaner, for the negative content was unnecessary to express the heart of this story. The sweetness of this journey and the lovely characters (especially Pascal, Lisette, and the Chagalls) swept me into the south of France and attempted to keep me there. One day, perhaps I will visit this little village and reminisce about this stor ...more
Denice Barker
Aug 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you are going to read a novel by Susan Vreeland, you are going to learn something. And even if you think you don’t want to learn something about art and art history, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easily she dishes it up.
Lisette and her new husband move from Paris, where they both worked in the art world, to Roisson, in the Provence region, a place known for it’s wine, olive groves, ochre mines and fields of lavender, to care for Andre’s grandfather who is aging and needs to tell his
Karen Michele Burns
Susan Vreeland is one of the authors I anticipate with joy. Her latest book, Lisette’s List, did not disappoint. First of all, it took me to Paris, my favorite city to visit, and then on to the countryside village of Roussillon, an area of France that has now moved to the top of my list of places to experience. Add to that Vreeland’s ability to describe art and the artistic process in a way that brings it to life, the historical setting of WWII and paintings taken during the Nazi occupation of F ...more
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was longest on my TBR shelf. I always like her books and this was no exception.

Although I would classify this as a WWII historical novel, it isn't gloom and doom. Sad and bad things happen, but it's more of the setting than the plot. I wasn't happy with the ending of the romantic story line but you can't have it all.

My usual complaints of her books continue--I wish she had even one photo of a drawing that is covered in such detail in the story. In this case showing is better than telling!
Dec 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a fabulous book that tells Lisette's story from pre-war Paris through World War II and beyond. Susan Vreeland tells such a tale that one forgets that this is fiction and that these are characters and not real persons who have experienced the war and its hardships. Plus, she gives some of the greatest painters in history a fictional life on her pages. She captures the spirit of the times and showers us with the emotions and the wants of the French people during wartime.

Lisette's List is o
May 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Written by one of my most all time FAVOURITE Authors, Susan Vreeland--I have been fortunate to be one of 12 Lucky readers to have been given the first 3 chapters to read, before the novel is distributed, which I happily did! This has left me craving to read the rest! So for my rating on what I have read thus far , I am definitely giving this Novel. 5 Star Rating!!
Read this, I know you will LOVE it!!
Christopher Hicks
Apr 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a pretty good book. It was full of Beautiful details. It dragged in a few places and some parts weren't feasible but over al it was a fun read. ...more
Kristy Miller
The book opens as Lisette is on her way from Paris to a small town in Provence. She is going to meet her husband, Andre, at his grandfather's house, and to take care of the old man in his final years. Lisette is not happy that they are leaving their friends, and art centered life in Paris for small town life. Lisette grows to live Pascal, and loves to hear his stories of the famous artists to whom he sold paints and frames. Sometimes, in exchange for his work, he was paid in paintings, and he ha ...more
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Excellent! I love her books. I learn so much! This one was set in a small village in Provence that I have actually visited. Ochre mines, villages & hillsides in every hue...learning the sacrifices made in this area during WWII & the subtle ways people resisted the occupation...sporting yellow & black pocket handkerchiefs in protest of the Stars of David the Jews were forced to wear...using wine corks & wire for bicycle tires since all rubber had been confiscated for the troops...a young woman fr ...more
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Play Book Tag: Lisette's List by Susan Vreeland 3 stars 1 9 May 31, 2016 04:46PM  

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Susan Vreeland is an internationally renowned best-selling author and four-time winner of the Theodor Geisel Award for Fiction, the San Diego Book Award’s highest honor. She is known for writing historical fiction on art-related themes, including Girl in Hyacinth Blue, The Passion of Artemisia, Luncheon of the Boating Party, and Clara and Mr. Tiffany. Her books have been translated into 26 languag ...more

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