I read these books like the Library Journal (Starred Review) said they are, "an Adult Fairy Tale”.
I would be willing to state that readers who are new to this author might feel the beginning of this particular book may feel slow at first, but it needs to be so it can literally paint the picture for what is yet to come. Without this, we would be lost in many places throughout this story. Relax, enjoy what you’re reading, and know you’re going to read a story that you will be able to connect with and love!
At the house, she feels a pull to it, or something in this house wants her, and she wants it, whatever it is. Now she must know more about it. Sandrine is really drawn to the bell tower on her grandmother’s property. After grandmother left with her company, Sandrine goes into the house, but not far as she intended as she meets a man named Julien. He is an architect who is cataloging the house. They left and talked about Alchemy. Since he is an architect and had been hired to restore the house with the alchemic medallions all through it. While talking and being together with him, she could feel herself being drawn to this man. Is this what her grandmother meant? She could see herself doing private things with this man and tried to put them out of her mind.
Later, Grandmother asks about Sandrine’s marriage and she tells her the truth, and Grandmother agrees with her that that is no marriage and she felt for her about what she went through, but she would learn more about love and sensuality while she was here now in Paris. She didn't ask how, just accepted the statement.
She, or is it Le Lane, wants to become a professional painter, and not having painted before, is painting well enough to get accepted into very well known school, but only men are allowed to go here so Sandrine dresses up like a man and is accepted! When she takes off the wig and mustache, the school has issues with that as they find out Sandrine is a woman and only men have ever gone to that Art school. She does get accepted after all!