We have all seen, whether live, in photographs or on postcards, some of Claude Monet’s legendary water lily paintings. They are in museums all over the world, and are among the most beloved works of art of the past century. Yet, ironically, these soothing images were created amid terrible personal turmoil and sadness. The extraordinarily dramatic history behind the creation of these paintings is little-known; Ross King’s book tells that story for the first time and, in the process, presents a compelling and original portrait of one of our most beloved artists. King tells the full history of the special circumstances in which Monet created the ‘Water Lilies’.