Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney

Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney
Bloomsbury USA | Hardcover, 280 pages
Publication Date: September 3rd, 2013
YA Romance
Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars

Seventeen-year-old Julien is a romantic—he loves spending his free time at the museum poring over the great works of the Impressionists. But one night, a peach falls out of a Cezanne, Degas ballerinas dance across the floor, and Julien is not hallucinating.
The art is reacting to a curse that trapped a beautiful girl, Clio, in a painting forever. Julien has a chance to free Clio and he can’t help but fall in love with her. But love is a curse in its own right. And soon paintings begin to bleed and disappear. Together Julien and Clio must save the world’s greatest art . . . at the expense of the greatest love they’ve ever known.
Like a master painter herself, Daisy Whitney brings inordinate talent and ingenuity to this romantic, suspenseful, and sophisticated new novel. A beautifully decorated package makes it a must-own in print.

“If I were seeing genies riding on magic carpets while huffing hookahs, I’d be less shocked. Instead, all my senses are ignited and my brain is buzzing, and it feels like I’m dreaming, but I know I’m wide awake and seeing art come alive. This girl has danced her way right out of a Degas.”
Julien is one extra-ordinary teenager. For one, he’s well-versed in Art History as opposed to video games. He sees art in its purest forms; he lives and breathes in the culture unlike any boys his age or adults for that matter. He’s ensconced in it so much that he can easily see when a masterpiece starts to show signs of fading. He is one of those sweet and sensitive boys minus the angst. On the heels of a break-up from an American girl who only saw him as a mediocre artist, he came back to a museum come alive – quite literally. Ballerinas off of Degas,  3-D Monet landscapes and fruits falling out of a Cèzanne.

As much as he’s one of those boys that has the potential to become a heartthrob, Julien seemed a little too perfect for my taste. He’s just way too cultured and way too nice. The boy also barely blinked when he witnessed all the bizarre happenings that were happening to the art. I mean, if an 18th century figure leapt off the canvas they were in, any normal boy would shit my pants and go running the opposite direction.  It was just hard to explain how laid-back he was about it.

I do love how the author effortlessly describe each art pieces without sounding pretentious. The Art History is fascinating as well. I found myself going on the internet and searching for pictures of the art she’s mentioned. I love books that lead me to read up on an entirely different subject altogether. I’ve never wanted to go visit a museum as I have while I was reading this book.

The arches of this novel are kind of ridiculous: muses that lives in a basement, a human muse, the ghost of Rembrandt possessing other people in the hopes of forging himself, a powder of some sort that inspires people and truthfully, it’s the whole Night of the Museum inspired story that did me in. It was pretty funny in a are-you-kidding-me? kind of way. There was also a part of the story where all I could see in my head while reading was that video, Take on Me by A-ha. Basically, Julien can draw whatever it is he wants, sprinkle some fairy “muse” dust and voila! Yeah.

Sorry for yet another passive-aggressive review but it’s really hard to put the reading experience into words, to be honest. Don’t get me wrong; I did enjoy reading this. It was a fast read and like I said, you’ll learn a thing or two about art. It’s just so out there, that’s all. It has some pretty quirky secondary characters with personalities bigger than the major characters. Which is too bad because I thought Julien and Clio were great. Just…don’t ask about the romance between them. It’s just. Have I mentioned the word, ridiculous yet? Yeah.

  • I think i'll enjoy this one. The Art History draws me in as well as the Night at The Museum reference. It sounds fun. I don't think I'll see Julien as heartthrob though either.

  • Sounds like an art paranormal mix, which is something I've never seen before. I thought it was funny when you talked about Julien being so casual about all the weird happenings. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on an interesting book Joy!

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

  • I learned a lot about Art History, for sure. It's a quick read so it might be worth checking out, Nat. 🙂

  • Hmmm. I had this one checked out from the library at one point, but returned it unread. I love the cover and the pretty inside cover, but I don't think it's the book for me. Or is it? I do love art history. More confused than ever on whether or not I should pick this one up. Ha. Great review!

  • You might enjoy it, Carina. There's some really fantastical elements to it that you normally like. 🙂

  • It is nice. I've never been and I'm not holding my breath for a trip there so the book is as close as I can get. 🙂

  • Those are exactly what I had a hard time with, Jen. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  • I hope you'll enjoy it. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  • Great review Joy. <3 Yeah, probably not a book for me. Sigh. But I'm glad you kind of enjoyed it, but sorry some things weren't that good. Julien does sound a little bit too perfect, yes. Oh, well. Hoping you will love the next book that you read 😀

  • Ah it's a problem when the secondary characters are better than the first one… Well and for the romance… But it's always nice to see a book in Paris. It always makes me smile.

  • I understand — I had a mixed reaction to this one. There were things I loved — the Paris setting and some of the characters — but I wasn't as crazy about the instalove and some of the magical realism elements…

  • Great review! This was my WoW a while back and I'm looking forward to picking it up 🙂

    Happy Reading 😀