Sunday, May 24, 2015

Book Review: The Art Forger by B.A. Shapiro

Fiction. I read this one in January, it is one of the selections for the CLPL fiction book club (this coming September 2015), but since I cannot attend except in the summer due to my schedule, I catch up and read them when I can for the months I will miss.  This is about a young woman named Claire Roth who is one of those people who copies paintings for a living and sells them via those online sites.  She is approached by a well-to-do gallery owner to copy a painting that was once stolen, in exchange for a show of her own, a dream she has had for some time.  Needless to say she suspects she might be looking at and copying the real thing, and many intriguing and suspenseful things happen which I won't say lest I ruin it for others.

As somebody who has studied ancient masters works in the flesh and who has been in conservation studios of a few major museums, this was really fun for me!  I loved the details about how she developed a technique to fake craquelure and other elements, and then how she worked these techniques of baking the paintings into her own non-copied work.  I am not sure if you would like those parts if you are not a real art enthusiast, but I certainly enjoyed them.

At times it felt very much like an Indiana Jones movie or one of Dan Brown's novels, solving a whodunit and with important artifacts.  I really enjoyed this work and would recommend it to suspense fans, art lovers, and those who like something different in their fiction selections.  Definitely not the same-old same-old here.

And so it goes...

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