Leaving Van Gogh—it’s the art lover’s “Loving Frank.” I was surprised at how riveted I was by this book, given it moves at a rather slow pace, and you already know the ending. How much is historically accurate is unknown to me at this point, as I went in not knowing who Dr. Gachet was, but even if none of it were true, it’s a poignant tale of friendship between two sad men. All I now is that now, I feel like I need to run to the Art Institute and soak in as much Van Gogh as possible. I’m haunted, too, at the scenario laid out at the end of the novel. Would you, as a friend, help someone take their own life? What if she or he were fatally ill, as Dr. Gachet’s wife was? Or just severely depressed, as Van Gogh appeared to be? Why was it Gachet could help one, but not the other? Very, very well-written and a love story on so many levels.
Leaving Van Gogh