Book Reviews

The Dream Lover

In The Dream Lover, Elizabeth Berg imagines the life of Amantine Lucile Aurore Dupin (better known as the writer, George Sand) from childhood to her last days.

In her captivating style of writing, Elizabeth explores the difficulties of being a woman in a man’s world in the 1800’s.

Elizabeth departs from her previous writing style of using fiction as a vehicle to tackle important subjects to using a real person as the starting point to begin this novel, based on true stories.

Elizabeth explains how she came to write The Dream Lover, “One day, while reading The Writer’s Almanac, I came across some very intriguing facts about the life of Aurore Dudevant, who took the pen name George Sand when she began publishing novels. Given that her life seemed to be so interesting, so dramatic, I wanted to read a novel about her—I prefer reading novels to biographies, because fiction allows for a more colorful presentation of a character; it allows scenes and dialogue and speculation about motivation. To my surprise, I found that there wasn’t a single novel about George Sand. So, in the way that writers write what they want to read, I wrote a novel about this most extraordinary woman, who was a study in contradiction.”

“It wasn’t daunting to write about another writer, but it was daunting to write about someone so fiercely intelligent, and whose prose was so startlingly lucid and precise. I didn’t reach any new understandings about the writing process; rather, I had my own methods validated. Sand did not plot, she was wildly prolific, and she wrote from the heart. I can, as they say, relate to that.”

Note from Marlene: The Writer’s Almanac is a free daily podcast and email newsletter of poetry and historical interest pieces curated by Garrison Keillor.

Posts on The Write Spot Blog about writing from the heart:

Write From the Heart

Yes, You Can Write That Book You’ve Been Wanting to Write!

Does Your Heart Hurt?

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