Consuelo along with La Comtesse de Rudolstadt are among my favourite nineteen century novels. It's George Sand's masterpiece and bizarrely they were the books she wrote in the worst of times, always on the run, always on deadline. Writing in the dead on night, after all the visitors were asleep, sitting in her little cupboard, writing, writing until 4 am, sending the pages barely edited to Paris from Nohant to be published in the paper. Consuelo started out as a novel about music, opera and Venice. It gives the reader a wonderful view of the time, the people who had power and how a diva was made. But it went sideways because Sand needed money, because she was an amazingly curious writer and she became enamoured with Bohemia, its history, its legends. And Consuelo took a turn for the gothic and dramatic with her lead character on the road with a very young Haydn finding refuge in a very mysterious castle. There's a star cross love story, a dramatic ending, a wonderful, wonderful female lead, a mysterious, gothic lead male character full of angst, music, mysticism all mixed to form an operatic kinda novel. I still love it to pieces.