The Secret Life Of Sunflowers: A gripping, inspiring novel based on the true story of Johanna Bonger, Vincent van Gogh’s sister-in-law

· Dana Marton
11 reviews

About this ebook

"This book draws all the emotions out of you. I went from tears to snorting with laughter. It was both lighthearted and heart breaking, yet it inspires me to live my best life!" Michele Cox

When Hollywood auctioneer Emsley Wilson finds her famous grandmother's diary while cleaning out her New York brownstone, the pages are full of surprises. The first surprise is, the diary isn't her grandmother's. It belongs to Johanna Bonger, Vincent van Gogh's sister-in-law.

Johanna inherited Vincent van Gogh's paintings. They were all she had, and they weren't worth anything. She was a 28 year old widow with a baby in the 1800s, without any means of supporting herself, living in Paris where she barely spoke the language. Yet she managed to introduce Vincent's legacy to the world.

The inspiration couldn't come at a better time for Emsley. With her business failing, an unexpected love turning up in her life, and family secrets unraveling, can she find answers in the past?

"This book was so much more than I had expected, and I had high expectations... one of the most beautiful stories I've read in years." Kaela Stokes

Ratings and reviews

11 reviews
Linda Dossett
July 19, 2022
Loved this book! It delves into the stubborn, caring and dare I say, the early feminism of the sister-in-law, of Vincent Van Gogh. Who struggled with the terrible depression of her husband and brother in-law, the conditions of mental health care during those dark days. Then we spring forward to present day and Emsley, who has fallen into hard times and through the loss of her grandmother, finds strength and redemption in Johanna Bonger’s struggle. Excellent, engrossing read.
Did you find this helpful?
Carol Burns
September 11, 2022
loved this book. the dual writings, the author's humor and historical information. It was not only compelling and interesting, it was so well written. Congratulations to the author for believing in this book and doing all she could to make sure we could read, learn, be inspired...and just enjoy it.
Did you find this helpful?
Becca Stokes
August 21, 2023
loved it! really ensnares you. you'll be up all night reading this!
Did you find this helpful?

About the author

Marta Molnar is the author of the dual-timeline women's fiction novel THE LIFE OF SUNFLOWERS about Vincent van Gogh's inspirational sister-in-law Johanna Bonger. Marta is an avid art history enthusiast and a self-taught artist. She lives in the Northeast United States.

Rate this book

Tell us what you think.

Reading information

Smartphones and tablets
Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.
Laptops and computers
You can listen to audiobooks purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.
eReaders and other devices
To read on e-ink devices like Kobo eReaders, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Follow the detailed Help Center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.