Amy Recommends: Sunflowers by Sheramy Bundrick

Welcome to another edition of Amy Recommends! This week I would like to highlight a book that I read last year and have yet to get out of my head.  Which that fact alone should tell you just how much I loved it.  I live for the kind of books that stay with you forever and Sunflowers by Sheramy Bundrick is among those for me!

I also had a chance to interview Sheramy last year and you can read that HERE.

The one word that comes to mind when I think of this novel is GORGEOUS.  I loved every page, every word and really felt a connection to the enigmatic Vincent Van Gogh and his fictional muse Rachel. 

Everyone knows the story of Van Gogh and the ear cutting incident, well the story goes that after Van Gogh cut his ear he fled to a local brothel where he handed it for safekeeping to a prostitute named Rachel.  In Sunflowers, Bundrick expands on this story, making Rachel a main character and imagining a love affair between her and Van Gogh.  But, it's much more than a love story.  Sheramy Bundrick opened my eyes to the man behind the paintings and inner workings of a troubled mind.  And you know with this book that you are getting an accurate picture being that Bundrick is an Art Historian and Professor.

One warning I do need to mention is to have plenty of Kleenex handy when you reach the end - trust me, you'll need it!!  Oh and make sure your significant other is not in the room and can make fun of you for balling your eyes out over someone you've never met :)

Sunflowers:  A Novel of Vincent Van Gogh
by Sheramy Bundrick

Publication Date:  October 13, 2009

SYNOPSIS:  In July 1888, in a public garden in Arles, France, Vincent van Gogh meets a young woman who will change his life forever. He came to Arles to escape the strains of Paris and find a different light for his painting. Meeting Rachel was the spark he needed to rededicate himself. Feeding off the energy of this fascinating woman, fighting the hopelessness deep inside him, Vincent throws himself into his work.

Rachel, desperate to flee the shame of village scandal, is drawn to the loneliness she senses in this strange man. Filled with dreams and a love of life, Rachel strikes up an unexpected friendship with the mysterious foreigner. As she and Vincent grow closer, Rachel comes to believe that the man everyone gossips about could be the love she longs for.

But as time passes, she gains a deeper insight into a man struggling with personal demons. Can Vincent′s growing attachment to Rachel save him? And will Rachel find the strength to stand by a man she has come to care for deeply, even as he spirals into darkness?

Author Links:  Website | Blog



  1. I'll have to try and find this. My BA is art history and I love van Gogh's works. Lust for Life is on my all time favorite book list.

  2. I love Sunflowers and have loved to watch the tour de france going past fields and fields of them - now today I see your review! This sounds so very good. A different perspective maybe.

  3. I have had this hardback sitting in my TBR for awhile but have hesitated since I never really heard anything about it. As an artist myself I have an affinity for books about artists and the creative process. Your glowing review certainly has me excited (I will be heading to your interview with Bundrick next). With your mention of needing tissues, would you say this is a heavy read, emotionally? How would you compare this to other art history books you may have read?

    I am really enjoying your "Amy recommends" feature. What a wonderful way to spotlight lesser known or older books/authors!

  4. You sold me the first time you mentioned the book and now here you are reminding me that I never did pick up a copy of this. Book and tissues on the list.

  5. Nice review. I love these stories that are prompted by paintings. On my list...

  6. I'll have to put this on my TBR list. It sounds like a good winter read, curled up in a chair with a blanket. My husband has learned to see the tears and walk away. He may roll his eyes, but he knows better than to give me a hard time.
    Thanks for the review and recommendation.

  7. I agree that Kleenex is a must. I enjoyed this book.


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