Rosa's Animals: The Story of Rosa Bonheur and Her Painting Menagerie by Maryann McDonald. 64 p. Abrams, June, 2018.9781419728501. (Review of purchased finished copy.)
Now, before I even begin to tell you about this biography, I ask you, how can you resist that cover? It is not a photograph but a painting so realistic, the lion looks ready to leap from the cover. Fantastic. The painter? Rosa Bonheur, who was born into an artistic household and who had the good fortune of having an open-minded father who not only encouraged her art but her education. She developed a love of animals and painting them early and it continued all of her life. Her studio was a veritable barn and is depicted in one of the many crisp photos of her artwork.
The slightly oversized book is beautifully designed, with plenty of white space and well-captioned photos. The storytelling is brisk and engaging, though my one quibble has to do with the depiction of the artist's friendship with Buffalo Bill Cody. While fine historical context was provided earlier, there was