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R. w.
Meek's
Story

The Dream Collector immerses the reader into the exciting milieu of late 19 th Century Paris
when art and medicine were in the throes of revolution, art turning to Impressionism, medicine
turning to psychology. In 1885, Julie Forette, a self-educated woman from Marseilles, finds
employment at the infamous Salpêtrière, hospital and asylum to over five thousand disabled,
demented and abandoned women, a walled city ruled by the famed neurologist and arrogant
director, Dr. Jean-Martin Charcot.

Julie Forette forms a friendship with the young, visiting intern Sigmund Freud who introduces
her to the altering-conscious power of cocaine. Together they pursue the hidden potential of
hypnotism and dream interpretation. After Freud receives the baffling case of the star hysteric,
Sabrine Weiss, he is encouraged by Julie to experiment with different modes of treatment,
including “talking sessions.” Their urgent quest is to find a cure for Sabrine, Princess of the
Hysterics, before Dr. Charcot resorts to the radical removal of her ovaries.

In Paris, Julie finds a passion for the new art emerging, Impressionism and Post-Impressionism,
and forms friendships with the major artists of the period, including Pissarro, Monet, and Degas.
Julie becomes intimately involved with Cezanne and the “Peruvian Savage” Paul Gauguin. Julie
becomes the eponymous ‘Dream Collector’ collecting the one untamable, unforgettable dream of the major historical figures of the period.

 

About the Author

R.w. Meek has a Master’s degree in Art History from the American University in Washington,
D.C., his areas of expertise are Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, with a particular interest
in Vincent van Gogh. He has interned and conducted tours at the National Museum of American
and the National Gallery of Art. In 2022 and 2023 five of his chapter excerpts from his novel
“The Dream Collector” were either finalists or published in various literary journals. The author
has also won the Palm Beach Book Festival Competition for “Best Writer in Palm Beach’ his
manuscript judged by a panel of NYT Best Selling authors. “The Dream Collector” also received
gold and silver medals in the Historical Fiction Company literary contest and earned runner-up
for the “Best Historical Fiction’ of 2022.

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