Book Review: Fugitive Colors By Lisa Barr

By Jackie Pilossoph, Founder, Divorced Girl Smiling, the place to find trusted, vetted divorce professionals, a podcast, website and mobile app.

I’m a huge fan of historical Holocaust fiction, so when I heard about Lisa Barr’s debut novel, Fugitive ColorsI was really excited. What I didn’t expect, however, was how over-the-top outstanding the book was, both the storyline and the writing.

Fugitive Colors is one of those books that has the reader hooked from literally, page one. I’ve read other outstanding books that are among my all time favorites, such as The Help and Once We Were Brothers, and I have only the best things to say about both those books, but they didn’t have that “glued to the story from the very first page” aspect like Fugitive Colors has.

Fugitive Colors begins in Chicago in the mid 1930’s, where Julian Klein, an Orthodox Jew leaves his life and family to pursue his dream as an artist in Paris. His first day there, he happens to meet a group of three other artists in a café, Rene, a naturally born gifted painter, Felix, the defiant son of a Nazi leader ranked highly in Germany, and Adrienne, the woman who  in the first two minutes steals Julian’s heart.  Instantly bonding with this fun, vivacious group, Julian finds true friendship and a sense of warmth he’s never known.

But this is the 1930’s, and Europe is getting more dangerous by the day, especially for Jews. And before he knows it, Julian’s career as an artist is being overshadowed by the fight not only for his life and freedom, but for the Jewish artwork that the Nazi’s are trying to destroy.

Fugitive Colors is a story of four friends, all with one thing in common: their passion and love for art. But war and religion and power have a way of bringing out each one’s true colors, especially when envy turns to jealousy and eventually to utter betrayal.

Being so busy with my own writing, freelance jobs, children and trying to enjoy my summer, I rarely find time to read. That said,Fugitive Colors was basically taking over my life, and I’m now suffering from borderline exhaustion since I’ve gone to bed at midnight the past 5 nights, unable to stop reading this amazing book!

With superb writing, characters I adored and passionately hated, the interesting things I learned about art in Europe in the 1930’s, and many heart pounding, shockingly disgusting moments, peppered with heartwarming, poignant moments throughout the story,Fugitive Colors is the best book I’ve read in a long, long time. I am banking on Fugitive Colors hitting best-seller status soon!

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    Jackie Pilossoph

    Editor-in-chief: Jackie Pilossoph

    Jackie Pilossoph is the Founder of Divorced Girl Smiling, the media company that connects people facing with divorce to trusted, vetted divorce professionals. Pilossoph is a former NBC affiliate television journalist and Chicago Tribune/Pioneer Press features reporter. Her syndicated column, Love Essentially was published in the Chicago Tribune/Pioneer Press and Tribune owned publications for 7 1/2 years. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism from Boston University. Learn more at:

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