Water Lily Dance: Watch the Book Trailer!
The lives and secrets of three women, centuries apart, intersect at the artist Claude Monet’s garden in this emotional, imaginative portrait of loss, love, and second chances.
From the award-winning, bestselling author of Essie’s Roses, Michelle Muriel intertwines past and present in this imaginative, emotional portrait of the secret side of grief and the deep bonds and secrets between mothers and daughters. Three women centuries apart set out to escape a colorless life, connected by one of the most controversial, beloved artists in the world: Claude Monet. But at what cost?
Through years of research, new historical finds, and Michelle’s personal loss, Water Lily Dance transports the reader to the Impressionists’ Paris and the colorful, fragile world of Sophie Noel, a young widow and budding artist on the edge. Michelle’s heartbreaking, heart-mending stories, lyrical prose, and stunning historical settings provide readers with an imaginative escape into the past with heartfelt relevance for the present.
For the history and reason behind this special story, visit Michelle’s FAQ page
WATER LILY DANCE - Click here to READ THE INTERVIEW!
Michelle talks about her novel Water Lily Dance with Lynette Latzko of Feathered Quill Book Reviews.
Praise for WATER LILY DANCE!
“A brilliantly penned and original novel showcasing the extraordinary talent and genuine flair of a distinctive narrative storytelling style . . . An absorbing and inherently riveting read from beginning to end . . .”
“. . . a fantastic air of reinvention to this deeply emotional and sensitive tale . . . it was the characters at the very heart which draw you in and keep you reading, superbly developed and likable as they are. Water Lily Dance is a highly recommended read.” 5 stars!
“Author Michelle Muriel delights readers once again . . . Water Lily Dance is more than a mere novel that happens to revolve around an Impressionist artist. It is a wonderfully written . . . moving portrayal of the strength and resilience of women . . . a story that should not be missed.”
Midwest Book Review
A brilliantly penned and original novel . . .
“A brilliantly penned and original novel showcasing the extraordinary talent and genuine flair of a distinctive narrative storytelling style, “Water Lily Dance” by Michelle Muriel is an unreservedly recommended addition to both community and academic library General Literary Fiction collections. An absorbing and inherently riveting read from beginning to end . . .” — Midwest Book Review
5 stars for Water Lily Dance from Readers’ Favorite!
Author’s new book receives a warm literary welcome.
Water Lily Dance is a novel mixing contemporary and historical stories and was penned by author Michelle Muriel. Set in both 2014 and 1865, we meet women in search of a better life for themselves, all of whom are connected by the romantic art and beautiful gardens of the artist Claude Monet. In the modern age, Sophie Noel is grief-stricken and in search of a way to cope, and her artistic tendencies lead her back to her love of Monet as a means of escape. And, in 1865, Camille Doncieux seeks more from life in the company of the rebellious and powerful artists of the time, one of whom is Claude Monet.
It is clear from the start that author Michelle Muriel relishes in fine art and has plenty of knowledge about it because her beautiful descriptions of Monet’s work make you feel as though you’re looking right at it. As a fan myself, I was totally transported by the historical setting of Paris reborn and the Salon culture, reveling in every stylish detail and the well-depicted dialogue of the post-uprising rebels. There is a fantastic air of reinvention to this deeply emotional and sensitive tale, making for a smooth mix of women’s emancipatory fiction, emotional drama and historical artistic fiction that fans of any/all are sure to enjoy. For me, it was the characters at the very heart which draw you in and keep you reading, superbly developed and likable as they are. Water Lily Dance is a highly recommended read. 5 stars! — K.C. Finn, Readers’ Favorite
Praise for Water Lily Dance from Feathered Quill Book Reviews!
Author Michelle Muriel delights readers once again . . .
Author Michelle Muriel delights readers once again with her sophomore novel, Water Lily Dance. This historical fiction drama guides readers through the lives of two resilient women living in two separate eras, one, 19th century Paris, and the second, modern-day Missouri. Intertwining their lives in the backdrop is the artist Claude Monet and his famous paintings of waterlilies.
In the 1800s, Camille Doncieux is a young lady living in Paris with a close relationship with her father and younger sister. She faithfully works in her father’s shop, but longs to break free of the rigid French traditions and make her own decisions, especially regarding whom she is to marry. Despite her father’s wishes, Camille befriends several local artists, who themselves are bucking the strict rules of traditional art forms in Paris, and agrees to pose for a few of their paintings. Camille is drawn toward one particular artist, Claude Monet, and together they fall in love, but she is torn between her expected life in Paris with her family, and the often times rocky, and not-as-respected life among artists with Claude.
Sophie Noel is a strong woman, who has had more than her fair share of loss in recent years. She had just started to cope with the death of her father, whom she has had a complicated past with, when her husband died tragically in an accident. This sends her into a major tailspin that she cannot seem to positively get through, despite the encouragement of her mother and close friends. One thing that she clings to besides her mother is art, particularly that of the painter Claude Monet, who whispers wisdom to her in her mind. Unfortunately, Sophie is left completely alone, swallowed up in her grief after her mother dies, and not knowing how to progress past the sadness. Together with a cast of dynamic and likable family and friends, Sophie is taken on a journey of her past and present that includes a few twists and surprises (including meeting a handsome Parisian!) that will hopefully allow her to work positively through her grief and move on to a happier, fulfilled life.
Water Lily Dance is more than a mere novel that happens to revolve around an Impressionist artist. It is a wonderfully written, sometimes a bit wordy, but nevertheless, moving portrayal of the strength and resilience of women, centuries apart. This reviewer was delighted that, shortly after reading this novel, I was able to visit an exhibit entitled, The Impressionist’s Eye, at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Author Michelle Muriel’s writing is so vividly descriptive throughout the entire story, that I too felt as if I could hear Claude Monet and his contemporaries whispering in my ear. This novel is also a great reminder, specifically for women readers, that we can move through and overcome grief and other obstacles, if we just give it, and life, a chance.
Quill says: Water Lily Dance is a beautifully moving story about women, love, grief and overcoming adversity; a story that should not be missed. — Lynette Latzko, Feathered Quill Book Reviews
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Essie’s Roses: Watch the Book Trailer!
Readers’ Favorite Book Award Winner!
Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner Southern Fiction
Thank you to Readers’ Favorite for selecting Essie’s Roses as a Readers' Favorite Book Award Winner! Essie’s Roses was awarded the silver medal for best Southern fiction novel.
5 Stars for ESSIE'S ROSES!
"Impressively well written from beginning to end, "Essie's Roses" is an inherently absorbing and skillfully presented read, establishing author Michelle Muriel as an exceptionally talented novelist."
"...tremendously impressive debut novel ... A richly moving reading experience."
"Miss Muriel's novel is a thing of beauty. 5 Stars!"
"...one of my favorite books from this year! 5 Stars!"
"...Ms. Muriel writes in four such distinct voices I felt like I was in the space with each one. ... exceptionally well written and it was very hard to put down. 5 Stars!"
"...all I can say is – wow, what an amazing read. ...I fully expect to see Essie’s Roses on the silver screen someday, but until then I will simply look forward to reading future works by this author. 5 Stars (and then add some more)!"
Have you read ESSIE’S ROSES and LOVED it? Thank you, friends, for helping me spread the word by leaving your reviews on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads. The heartwarming story of Essie’s Roses is reaching more readers because of you.
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Praise for ESSIE'S ROSES!
Continued thanks for spreading the word about Water Lily Dance and Essie’s Roses and sharing your reviews. I’m thrilled more readers are finding and enjoying this story!
Thank you for taking time out of your day to tell someone, “You need to check out this book!” So many wonderful people have told me, not only have they recently purchased and are reading Essie’s Roses, they have told their friends and family Essie’s Roses must be their next read.
YOU make the difference. New authors, like me, rely on you to share your reading experience and spread the word.
Read the Interview
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Give the Gift of Reading.
Did you know you can gift Water Lily Dance and Essie's Roses as a Kindle or Nook eBook? Just choose the option "Give as a Gift" at checkout. You can either print your gift code or email it to a friend. Don't have a Kindle or Nook? You can go to Amazon and download Kindle & Nook for your PC!
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Essie's Roses receives 5 stars from Feathered Quill Book Reviews!
"I have finished my reading of Essie’s Roses and all I can say is – wow, what an amazing read. What a well-written, completely believable and insightful book. Essie’s Roses is a ‘fictional’ novel, yet it encompasses the same importance of message, and will certainly remind readers of their intrinsic knowledge of right versus wrong with the same quiet strength of conviction that Harriet Beecher Stowe provided to her readers when she wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
Additionally though, this book is much more than just that. Essie’s Roses is the beautifully poignant tale of two girls; one white, the other colored – who grow up together (but still separate) during the mid-1800s. This is the story of their heartfelt and true love for one another. An accounting showing how they are each able to overcome the odds of the lives they have been born into. For even though slavery (the subjugation of an entire race due only to the ‘infraction’ of being born a different color) was commonly accepted as ‘right’ during our country’s younger years; this book will force the reader to look even further beyond that misconception – in order to acknowledge that there are many additional forms of slavery; and that they each stem from cruelty, coupled with a complete and utter disregard for the pricelessness of another human’s soul.
In Essie’s Roses, the reader will begin his, or her, literary journey with a very poignant show of love – as a young colored girl named Essie Mae seeks to save the life of her (white) best-friend, Evie Winthrop. Essie Mae also understands that to be caught would result in the loss of her own life, but she cannot – more importantly will not; leave her best friend to suffer alone.
From here, the story continues – providing the reader with a brief glimpse into the lives of the mothers who birthed these two girls, before the story again moves forward and focuses on each one of the two very different, yet very similar, lives of Essie Mae and Evie.
While I could provide the potential reader with additional information about this amazing and riveting novel – I choose not to. The power of the words and the story found within Essie’s Roses needs to be discovered by the reader for her or himself.
Quill says: Michelle Muriel has penned a wonderfully moving work of fiction – and one that will leave no reader with a dry eye. I fully expect to see Essie’s Roses on the silver screen someday, but until then I will simply look forward to reading future works by this author. Five Stars (and then add some more)!" - Charline Ratcliff, Feathered Quill Book Reviews
Historical Novel Society
Read the review!
Michelle Muriel’s tremendously impressive debut novel takes place in the Antebellum South and centers on the experiences of four remarkable women: Katherine Winthrop, a sweet-natured woman who comes to find herself the owner of Westland, an Alabama cotton plantation; Delly, her strong-willed house slave and confidant; Evie, Katherine’s daughter, and Essie Mae, a young slave girl who forms a deep and life-changing friendship with young Evie.
As the two girls grow to young adulthood, the world around them darkens and agitates more and more toward the triggering events of the American Civil War, and when the two travel to Richmond, Virginia, on the eve of war, they are exposed to the worst depravities of a depraved society. Their friendship is tested in several very dramatic ways.
Muriel does an extremely confident job of moving her complex, multi-part novel forward. Her characters are vividly drawn, and the many period details – social, linguistic, and even literary – with which she fleshes out her story never feel forced or melodramatic.
Fans of both Gone with the Wind and Geraldine Brooks’ March will find Essie’s Roses a richly moving reading experience. -Historical Novel Society
Midwest Book Review
"Impressively well written from beginning to end, Essie's Roses is an inherently absorbing and skillfully presented read, establishing author Michelle Muriel as an exceptionally talented novelist." -Midwest Book Review
Essie’s Roses Book Trailer
WATCH the BOOK TRAILER!
Watch the ESSIE’S ROSES BOOK TRAILER! A heartfelt historical novel about hope, freedom, and the power of a dream. Finished at last. I wrote and performed the music, added my voice-over, and now hope you enjoy and share!
Thank You, Friends!
I treasure your support. Visit my home page to see the links to buy Water Lily Dance and Essie’s Roses available as a hardcover and paperback print book and as an eBook. Please don’t forget to support your local indie bookstore and library. Water Lily Dance and Essie’s Roses are also available on IndieBound!
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