Thursday, February 24, 2022

The Art of Traveling Strangers Book Review & Book Tour Giveaway

This morning, I have a women's fiction novel in our book review spotlight!  Check out The Art of Traveling Strangers, learn about author Zoe Designy, read my thoughts on the book and be sure to enter for a chance to win a prize in the book tour giveaway at the end of this post.

Book Title:  The Art of Traveling Strangers by Zoe Disigny
Category:  Adult Fiction 18+, 272 pages
Genre:  Literary Fiction, Women's Fiction 
Publisher:  Subplot Publishing 
Release date:   February 2022
Content Rating:  PG13 + M for cursing (from a side character), reference to adultery, and discussion of AIDS. 

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About the Book

It’s the 1980s, and art historian Claire Markham reels from a series of heartbreaking losses. Desperate to escape her shattered reality, she becomes an art guide in Europe for quirky stranger Viv Chancey and embarks on a life-changing journey through the art-filled cities of Milan, Venice, Ravenna, Florence, Siena, Rome, and Paris.

Once abroad, Claire tries to hide her woes by focusing on Viv’s art education, but Viv—who is not who she seems—has a different learning experience in mind. Frustrated and wanting to reimagine her life, Claire embraces the idea of reality as illusion and finds herself slipping into the tales of art and history.

When threatened with one more crushing loss, Claire must learn from the spirit of her eccentric companion and the lessons from the art they encounter to take charge of her life or lose the most precious thing in it.

The Art of Traveling Strangers is a journey of self-discovery and personal empowerment inspired by the great art masterpieces of Italy and France. It’s a tale of female bonding and the amazing powers of perception. After all, reality, like art, is just an illusion.


My Review


The Art of Traveling Strangers Takes Readers on a Journey. While the art history journey through Italy and France is a significant component of the novel--there are personal journeys for Viv and Claire developing as well. As an art history lover--I enjoyed visiting my bucket list sites and exploring art with Claire's guidance. I also enjoyed watching Claire re-discover herself along the way.  


The Author Gives Readers a Slightly Different Look at Female Bonding. Initially, I didn't care much for Claire's or Viv's character. As the book progressed, I didn't feel that the two had the usual female bonding experience we read in women's fiction, where two backgrounds collide and they become one. Instead--the author lets the characters grow and learn about themselves in the others' company. I don't feel that Viv had a lot of interest in art--but her personality and strength of character brought realizations that Claire needed along the way.  


Would I Recommend The Art of Traveling Strangers by Zoe Disigny? The story is not about finding an incredible friendship bond with another woman. It is more about seeing the world and learning from others in ways to understand yourself better. If you are not a fan of European art history--you may feel less attached to the story and the characters. However, I would recommend this book to art history lovers and fans of women's fiction. 


Buy the Book
Amazon ~ B&N ~
add to goodreads

Meet the Author

Zoe Disigny holds a master’s degree in art history and has taught at the college level throughout her career. She has led numerous art tours in Europe and established a business in Paris offering art history adventures for American tourists. 

connect with the author: website ~ twitter ~ facebook ~ instagram ~ goodreads
Enter the Giveaway



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