Villa America by Liza Klaussmann

Villa America

Liza Klaussmann

Villa America: Riviera home of wealthy Americans, Gerald and Sara Murphy, whose lavish parties are attended by Picasso, Hemingway, Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald. But despite the 'life lived as art' ethos, I felt like the only guest without a drink, wondering how soon things would turn ugly. And though I did not warm to any of the characters, I was moved by this fascinating story about people whose lives were a mystery to me.

Extract

He thought of Owen. 'I don't want to be a coward anymore,' he'd said. Was he, Gerald Murphy, a coward? Perhaps a little. But mainly he wanted to build a beautiful castle, an idyll with high walls, to keep his children safe, to keep his love for Sara safe. To keep their life safe. From ugliness, and violence, and desperation. But mostly, from confusion. And to do that he had to scotch some of the defects in himself. As best he could.

Parallels
  • The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
  • Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood
  • Z: a novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler