The Marriage of Opposites is a new novel by one of my favorite authors, Alice Hoffman. This story is based on the family of Camille Pissarro the well-known impressionist artist. The story traces the history of his ancestors and their plight to discover a safe place to live where they would not be persecuted for their faith in Judaism.
Much of the novel focuses on Camille’s mother Rachel, her life, marriages, children, and friends on the small island of Saint Thomas. As this book is historical fiction, a large amount of it is based on known facts; facts which I found very interesting. There is a degree of commonality in the struggles of the Jewish people and African slaves who lived and worked on the island.
I enjoyed the novel and am amazed as always by Hoffman’s ability to create a believable story based on historical people and events. I was moved by it. Beautiful prose Alice!