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News & Events


Luke Jerod Kummer & Nellie Hermann in Conversation at Powerhouse Arena

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 28, 2019, 7:00-9:00PM

The Powerhouse Arena celebrates the debut of The Blue Period with a conversation between Luke Jerod Kummer and Nellie Hermann, the author of Season of Migration, a novel about van Gogh's early years.

28 Adams Street (Corner of Adams & Water Street @ the Archway), Brooklyn, NY 11201

Please RSVP here


Book Rap at The National Press Club

TUESDAY, AUGUST 20, 2019, 6:30 PM

The National Press Club hosts a reading of The Blue Period and a Q&A in the Cosgrove Lounge.

529 14th St NW, Washington, DC (please check in on the 13th Floor)



Book Party for The Blue Period at Rizzoli Bookstore

MONDAY, JULY 15, 2019, 6:00-8:00PM

Rizzoli Bookstore celebrates the debut of The Blue Period with refreshments and live music by @maferbandola of LADAMA.

1133 Broadway, New York, NY




Press Club Hosts Book Rap About Fictional Portrait of Picasso

JULY 30, 2019 | By Naomi Weiss


National Press Club member Luke Jerod Kummer plans to discuss his debut novel, "The Blue Period," at a Book Rap in the Cosgrove Lounge on Tuesday, Aug. 20, at 6:30 p.m.


The event is free for Club members and their guests but registration is required. Please email


Kummer plans to sell books at the event. Please also reserve a copy when registering for the event.

In "The Blue Period," Kummer envisions the rarely-known bohemian life of young Pablo Picasso as a time of love, lust, death and despair.


"From rowdy Barcelona barrooms to the incandescent streets of turn-of-the-century Paris, Pablo Picasso experiences the sumptuous highs and seedy lows of bohemian life alongside his rebellious poet friend with a shadowy past, Carles Casagemas," according to a press release by Kummer's publisher.


"Lusciously written and deeply imaginative, Kummer's debut is an edgy, elegant reimagining of a period in Picasso's life that forever changed the art world," said Karin Tanabe, author of "The Gilded Years."

Kummer has worked as a reporter, editor and travel writer. His nonfiction pieces have appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, New York magazine, New Republic, the Washingtonian and the Village Voice.


— Read the full article on The National Press Club's website



The Blue Period chosen as an "Amazon First Read" for June 2019

JUNE 1, 2019—The Blue Period was selected to be a part of Amazon First Reads, a program offering early access to editors' top picks for soon-to-be-released titles, both Kindle versions and special advance hardcovers. 


From the Editor:


"Behind every great piece of art is a story. Behind the early work of Pablo Picasso, there was a drama so tragic and intense, it's surprising that a novel like this has never been written.


In Luke Jerod Kummer's The Blue Period, we see the real-life story of how Picasso ventured to Paris as a young man and found himself entangled in a love triangle that nearly ruined him before inspiring his great period of artistic achievement.


I love how this novel gave me the experience of being in Paris at the turn of the twentieth century—before the city was the center of artistic expression, and long before Picasso's groundbreaking work in cubism began. In the novel, we come to understand and see the young artist, barely an adult, arrive in Paris from Barcelona and discover his potential. I was fascinated to learn that from that span of time emerged what art historians now call the Blue Period, thought by many to be a reference only to his palette but that also encompasses the early, dark mood that beset Picasso—until true love saved him at last, and led to the Rose Period that first brought him fame.


Luke Jerod Kummer managed to take what was once a few paragraphs in Picasso's biography and turn it into a wonderfully told coming-of-age novel. After reading this book, I'll never look at another Picasso painting the same way." — Carmen Johnson, Editor



The Blue Period reviewed by Booklist

MAY 24, 2019—"The early life of the world-renowned artist, Pablo Picasso, gets an historical fiction rendering from travel writer and journalist Kummer in his first novel. In rich, color-infused passages, young Picasso excels beyond the traditional art schools in Barcelona, falls in with a raucous group of creatives, including poet and artist Carles Casagemas, with whom he has a maudlin yet steadfast friendship, and, fatefully, has a painting accepted for the 1900 World Exposition in Paris. It is there that Pablo and his cohort Carles discover a bohemian life that exceeds their hitherto limited aspirations. It is also where the two meet and fall for a Parisian brunette named Germaine who models for them. What starts as friendship and scenes reminiscent of the classic Truffaut film Jules et Jim (1962), turns sour as Carles obsessively longs for Germaine while Pablo passionately acts on his desire for her. Kummer's descriptions of Paris at the turn of the century and the emotional turmoil within fame-destined Pablo create a quixotic tone that fans of lush biographical fiction will find especially alluring." — Booklist