Fake Like Me
At once a twisted psychological portrait of a woman crumbling under unimaginable pressure and a razor-sharp satire of the contemporary art scene, FAKE LIKE ME is a dark, glamorous, and addictive story of good intentions gone awry, from the critically acclaimed author of I'll Eat When I'm Dead. What really happened to Carey Logan?After a fire decimates her studio, including the seven billboard-size paintings for her next show, a young, no-name painter is left with an impossible task: recreate her art in three months-or ruin her fledgling career. Homeless and desperate, she flees to an exclusive retreat in upstate New York famous for its outrageous revelries and glamorous artists. And notorious as the place where brilliant young artist Carey Logan-one of her idols-drowned in the lake. But when she arrives, the retreat is a ghost of its former self. No one shares their work. No parties light up the deck. No one speaks of Carey, though her death haunts the cabins and the black lake, lurking beneath the surface like a shipwreck. As the young painter works obsessively in Carey's former studio, uncovers strange secrets and starts to fall--hard and fast--for Carey's mysterious boyfriend, it's as if she's taking her place. But one thought shadows her every move: What really happened to Carey Logan?

Fake Like Me Details

TitleFake Like Me
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJun 18th, 2019
PublisherGrand Central Publishing
ISBN-139781538759516
Rating
GenreFiction, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller, Mystery Thriller

Fake Like Me Review

  • Chelsea Humphrey
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars rounded to 4I'll admit, I'm less than knowledgable about anything involving the art scene. I am not cool, hip, or in the know about much these days other than Peppa Pig and Blippi, but it was nice to delve into an "adult" story that did not feature talking pigs or a grown man wearing clothes that appear to fit a toddler. This story is also being touted as a thriller, which I guess it is in some ways, but I would classify this more as a literary thriller, or a dramatic, thought provokin 3.5 stars rounded to 4I'll admit, I'm less than knowledgable about anything involving the art scene. I am not cool, hip, or in the know about much these days other than Peppa Pig and Blippi, but it was nice to delve into an "adult" story that did not feature talking pigs or a grown man wearing clothes that appear to fit a toddler. This story is also being touted as a thriller, which I guess it is in some ways, but I would classify this more as a literary thriller, or a dramatic, thought provoking crime fiction. That's not a criticism, merely a heads up to those looking for a more classic thriller. Where to start? This glitzy, sleek story is told in such a unique format; we do not learn the official name of out narrator, who gives off an unstable vibe from the very beginning, and I honestly found this so fascinating. I was intrigued to know what drove this character, what brought her to the art scene, and how someone could so seamlessly slip into the lifestyle of another person. Like I said, this is really more of a dark character study than a thriller, but there's enough of a vein of suspense that keeps the reader hooked and intrigued throughout. I found that once our nameless girl makes it to the art retreat Pine City, that the pacing really picked up and I found myself fully invested.I don't want to say much more, but if you decide to read this one, and want to discuss in greater detail (AKA SPOILERS), we would love to have you join our Goodreads bookclub HERE! *I was provided a finished copy of this book for review via the publisher; all thoughts are my own.******************Welcome to our June choice for the Suspenseful Clues and Thrilling Reviews Goodreads bookclub! Everyone is invited to join in, and you can find the discussion threads in the 2019 monthly reading tab HERE!
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  • Blair
    January 1, 1970
    (4.5) A no-name painter – 'no-name' as in 'not famous', but also literally, as she remains nameless throughout the book – is on the verge of a career breakthrough. She is nearing completion of her series Rich Ugly Old Maids, a set of large-scale oil paintings loosely based on the seven virtues. Then the loft in which she has been living and working burns down. Her insurance won't be paid out, because she wasn't supposed to be living there; her management still expects the show to be delivered on (4.5) A no-name painter – 'no-name' as in 'not famous', but also literally, as she remains nameless throughout the book – is on the verge of a career breakthrough. She is nearing completion of her series Rich Ugly Old Maids, a set of large-scale oil paintings loosely based on the seven virtues. Then the loft in which she has been living and working burns down. Her insurance won't be paid out, because she wasn't supposed to be living there; her management still expects the show to be delivered on schedule, as she'd claimed the finished works were in secure storage. As she sees it, there's only one way out. She has to recreate the work, via the single item she managed to salvage: a notebook containing meticulous notes on the process used to create each painting.In the background of all this, there's another important character: Carey Logan, the narrator's hero. Until she killed herself at the age of 37, Logan, a sculptor and performance artist, was an art industry darling. She was the most famous member of a five-person collective, Pine City; the group went on to establish a residency of the same name in upstate New York. As the narrator secures a place at Pine City and gets to know Logan's collaborators, the parallels between the two women become worryingly clear.Every turn of Fake Like Me is remarkably well handled. There's a sense that the narrator is stepping into Carey Logan's shoes, but she doesn't lose her identity, and her own art never ceases to be important. Her surroundings, from the fashionably ramshackle Pine City to her wealthy friend Max's astonishing modernist home, easily spring to life in the mind's eye. As do her paintings. I had guessed the twist well ahead of its reveal, but I didn't care. I think that's the best way to do a twist, really: it doesn't matter that it's reasonably obvious to the reader, because it's still immensely satisfying to watch everything (finally) click into place for the narrator.Smart and authentic and incredibly gripping, Fake Like Me isn't just a step up from Bourland's debut, I'll Eat When I'm Dead; it's several flights of stairs up. The narrator and her art are utterly believable creations. If you enjoyed What I Loved, The Strays or The Ecliptic, I urge you to add this to your wishlist. It's a literary art novel laced with enough elements of the psychological thriller to make it feel taut and compulsive – a brilliant concoction.I received an advance review copy of Fake Like Me from the publisher through NetGalley.TinyLetter | Twitter | Instagram | Tumblr
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  • Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)
    January 1, 1970
    A young un-named painter with potential is poised to make waves in the art community with her collection of seven billboard-size paintings.  When her apartment goes up in flames and decimates the entire collection, she lies to her gallery and says that six have been safely crated and stored; only the final painting she was still working on has been destroyed.  The gallery decides it's in their best interest to have her to re-create the final piece, which has already been sold, in total secrecy.N A young un-named painter with potential is poised to make waves in the art community with her collection of seven billboard-size paintings.  When her apartment goes up in flames and decimates the entire collection, she lies to her gallery and says that six have been safely crated and stored; only the final painting she was still working on has been destroyed.  The gallery decides it's in their best interest to have her to re-create the final piece, which has already been sold, in total secrecy.Now homeless and without a single piece for her show, she searches frantically for a studio available on short notice where she can re-create all seven pieces in their entirety in just three months.The artist is in awe when an acquaintance gets her a spot at the exclusive artist retreat known as Pine City in upstate New York. Pine City isn't just a resort, it's also the name of the collective of five artists who own it.Carey Logan was a member of Pine City, and the idol of our main character.  Carey's work was brilliant and her life ended far too soon when she purposefully stepped into a lake and drowned.When our no-name artist arrives at Pine City, she finds it's full of secrets. The retreat is shadowed by Carey's presence and yet none of the dead artist's friends will speak about her; she has been removed from every photo on the grounds, and none of the remaining collective will share their work.Across the lake is Max, our MC's childhood friend who has been famous most of her life for being wealthy and then earned fame with her photography skills.  Max swears total secrecy when she learns that her friend is re-creating her entire show but soon it appears Max has motives for keeping her secret.Carey Logan not only designed the home Max now lives in, but she was represented by Max's husband, Charlie. The MC learns that Charlie's gallery is in a legal battle with Pine City over a rumored final piece of art by Carey Logan.  What was the final piece?  Why is Pine City so secretive about their work and the legacy of Carey Logan?Fake Like Me fits solidly into the women's fiction genre but it also surprised me by being a dark satire as well as a thriller set in the glamorous contemporary art scene.  The characters are overwhelmingly pretentious and take themselves far too seriously, but as in all good satires, it was incredibly entertaining. I wasn't expecting the mystery surrounding Carey Logan to be so compelling; I couldn't turn the pages fast enough to uncover the truth.Thanks to Grand Central Publishing and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.  Fake Like Me is scheduled for release on June 18, 2019.For more reviews, visit www.rootsandreads.wordpress.com
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  • Lisa Gabriele
    January 1, 1970
    I was lucky to receive an ARC of Fake Like Me, and I DEVOURED it over a weekend, taking it with me everywhere I went. A young unnamed artist struggles in the shadow of an impossibly cool dead one, another young artist—gorgeous, enigmatic, talented—worshipped beyond measure in the downtown New York/Hudson Valley art scene. There's a mysterious compound where our dead girl created her work, and where those she left behind are still haunted by her death. Yes, there's a man gutted by her loss, who o I was lucky to receive an ARC of Fake Like Me, and I DEVOURED it over a weekend, taking it with me everywhere I went. A young unnamed artist struggles in the shadow of an impossibly cool dead one, another young artist—gorgeous, enigmatic, talented—worshipped beyond measure in the downtown New York/Hudson Valley art scene. There's a mysterious compound where our dead girl created her work, and where those she left behind are still haunted by her death. Yes, there's a man gutted by her loss, who our unnamed artist can't stay away from. You're sensing "Rebecca" vibes, but this is all brand new. It's a book about jealousy and legacy and who really owns your vision. But it's also a deeply sexy thriller, that will keep you guessing until the last gorgeously-written pages. A stunner.
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  • Kasa Cotugno
    January 1, 1970
    I can't remember reading anything that delved so deeply into the art world as this. Our narrator, a truly original painter who doesn't know her power, loses her home and 9th floor walkup studio in a fire and talks her way into an artists' compound of almost mythic reputation in the Adirondacks. Barbara Bourland claims to not have an in depth knowledge of this world, but this book belies that fact. Her descriptions of the creative process ring so true as our heroine creates her billboard-sized oi I can't remember reading anything that delved so deeply into the art world as this. Our narrator, a truly original painter who doesn't know her power, loses her home and 9th floor walkup studio in a fire and talks her way into an artists' compound of almost mythic reputation in the Adirondacks. Barbara Bourland claims to not have an in depth knowledge of this world, but this book belies that fact. Her descriptions of the creative process ring so true as our heroine creates her billboard-sized oil paintings because "they are the pinnacle of labor," expensive, weighing hundreds of pounds, incorporating such materials as copper shavings and jewels. Is one's identity only visible through their art or what other viewers may see in that art, or what is bruited abroad. At times I was reminded of Rebecca (the protagonist is unnamed, Carey, her predecessor, deceased, the waterfront setting which was the location of Carey's death). This is one hell of a read.
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  • Anna Luce
    January 1, 1970
    ★★✰✰✰ 2 starsBeyond its promising summary Fake Like Me is little more than a predictable and unsatisfying ode to the female artist.This book is not doing any favours to modern and in particular abstract art. If anything it confirms the notion that today 'anything' can qualify as art, and that critiques of modern art use an array of pretty metaphors that have little meaning or depth.ps: by "modern" art I mean conceptual, installation, and performance art (made by artist of dubious talent such as ★★✰✰✰ 2 starsBeyond its promising summary Fake Like Me is little more than a predictable and unsatisfying ode to the female artist.This book is not doing any favours to modern and in particular abstract art. If anything it confirms the notion that today 'anything' can qualify as art, and that critiques of modern art use an array of pretty metaphors that have little meaning or depth.ps: by "modern" art I mean conceptual, installation, and performance art (made by artist of dubious talent such as Tracey Emin).This novel should not be pegged as a suspense since there is very little tension or mystery to be found in its story. The first chapter sets an intriguing stage which is soon discarded as our mc travels to a retreat that is poorly described. A lot of the details surrounding this place are given in a muddled manner so that I could never quite picture it in my mind. The mc spends the first 30% of the novel in a self-pitying stupor, and she becomes increasingly obsessed with Carey Logan an artist who drowned in the retreat's lake. Apparently the two not only look alike but they are both 'women' so our mc obviously believes that it is them vs. the patriarchy. We are led to believe that there are only a handful of female artists (a huge lie) and that their work is therefore some sort of statement about their sex. Sure, way to embellish things...While this book succeeds in describing the technical aspects of constructing huge canvases, it fails to actually illustrate what these pieces on the whole look like. Yes, I know the colours that our nameless protagonist has used, but what about the shapes and forms of her painting? All those pages on the products she uses, where she buys these products, and how cumbersome these materials and tools can be...all for what? To have only a vague idea of what our mc's 'masterpieces' look like?Usually I prefer slow burn reads but here the narrative really made it hard for me to remain engaged in the story. This is partly due to the narrator, whose namelessness is merely a cheap trick to convey her 'ambiguous' or formless identity. She was the typical solipsistic self-pitying main character who believes that she is different from other women (she is not as attractive or stylish or confident, you know the drill). Her reflections on her art and art itself were laughable and seemed to belong to a thirteen year old rather than a person in their 30s. For that matter, all of the characters sounded and acted in a way that seemed 'young'. They act like teenagers who have had little life experiences...and the other artists and characters are never properly introduced, some have two or three lines here and there, which made them very superficial. The book is surprisingly tame and predictable yet the narrator seems to take herself and her artwork pretty—if not all too—seriously.Overall I thought that this was a clichéd story starring an irritating mc who attributes to her work all sorts of vapid or glib metaphors.If you are looking for a novel that beautiful portrays the struggles of an ambitious young artist I recommend Self-Portrait with Boy. Read more reviews on my blog
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  • Bam
    January 1, 1970
    It's 1996 and the unnamed narrator of this story is a fledgling artist from Florida, currently a sophomore at the Academy in NYC, and feeling pretty lonely in the big city. One day she notices a group of five young and beautiful artists who are 'making it' in the art scene. Three of them have graduated from the same art school she's attending and all are becoming well known for their nihilistic and shrewd work, rather all of a type. But it is a young woman of the group named Carey Logan who is t It's 1996 and the unnamed narrator of this story is a fledgling artist from Florida, currently a sophomore at the Academy in NYC, and feeling pretty lonely in the big city. One day she notices a group of five young and beautiful artists who are 'making it' in the art scene. Three of them have graduated from the same art school she's attending and all are becoming well known for their nihilistic and shrewd work, rather all of a type. But it is a young woman of the group named Carey Logan who is the hottest of them all with her hyperrealist sculptures of human body parts. Oh, how our narrator would love to be just like her and be part of that group now known as Pine City. They form an exclusive artist collective by that name, moving into an old resort in upper New York state, where each has their own studio and other artists are allowed to come by invitation only. Fast forward to 2006 and Carey has stopped working in sculpture and taken up performance art. The reviews are not kind and Carey does one last performance in which she commits suicide on film.Now three more years have passed and our unnamed artist is making a bit of a splash herself with her billboard-sized paintings when disaster strikes and her loft burns with most of her work inside. She lies to the gallery owner who is selling her work about the extent of her loss and now she must quickly repaint several works for her upcoming show. It's an impossible, super human task and where can she find a studio big enough to hold her work at this late date? One art patron she meets comes to her rescue and says she can get her a spot at Pine City. Wow! Her dream is finally coming true. The remaining four Pine City artists are not particularly welcoming at first. And she finds it odd that none of them will talk about Carey at all, even though her work still obviously influences theirs. Is there more going on here than meets the eye? I enjoyed the story but I don't think it's going to be everyone's cup of tea. I think you have to be very interested in art and enjoy reading the details of the creative process. The minutia does slow the story done a bit but I think the pace does make sense. It gives the reader an understanding of all the work this artist must go through to recreate her paintings and save her career. Desperate times. I had at first marked this as a 'thriller' but it is not. The touch of mystery is very light but rather interesting when you finally learn what's going on at Pine City. I think the story is much more about relationships and how people use other people. I received an arc from the publisher via NetGalley for my honest review. Many thanks.
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  • Laura Peden
    January 1, 1970
    "𝙀𝙫𝙚𝙧𝙮𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩'𝙨 𝙘𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙩𝙚𝙙 𝙙𝙚𝙨𝙩𝙧𝙤𝙮𝙨 𝙨𝙤𝙢𝙚𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙚𝙡𝙨𝙚."*𝐴𝑢𝑑𝑖𝑜𝑏𝑜𝑜𝑘 𝑅𝑒𝑣𝑖𝑒𝑤* Fake Like Me is a visceral, haunting character-driven suspense novel that delves into the art world. This book will not be for everyone. It’s not action packed, there are no gimmicks. Personally I found it intriguing and compulsive, but I’m also a lover of fine art. We are never given the narrator’s name. She’s a somewhat successful, somewhat struggling painter on the cusp of a huge upcoming deadline. She’s finishing up the o "𝙀𝙫𝙚𝙧𝙮𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩'𝙨 𝙘𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙩𝙚𝙙 𝙙𝙚𝙨𝙩𝙧𝙤𝙮𝙨 𝙨𝙤𝙢𝙚𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙚𝙡𝙨𝙚."*𝐴𝑢𝑑𝑖𝑜𝑏𝑜𝑜𝑘 𝑅𝑒𝑣𝑖𝑒𝑤* Fake Like Me is a visceral, haunting character-driven suspense novel that delves into the art world. This book will not be for everyone. It’s not action packed, there are no gimmicks. Personally I found it intriguing and compulsive, but I’m also a lover of fine art. We are never given the narrator’s name. She’s a somewhat successful, somewhat struggling painter on the cusp of a huge upcoming deadline. She’s finishing up the order of several large scaled pieces when a fire spreads through her studio/home, destroying all her work. Circumstances lead her to an elusive artists retreat where she attempts to recreate her works in an extremely short period of time, and becoming more unstable the closer the deadline gets. While there she is drawn into the mystery surrounding a suicide that happened on the property years earlier. The book gives an inside look into an artistic, somewhat hedonistic lifestyle within a community of well-known artists. It has just the right amount of feminism, without bashing you over the head with it. I have to say I can’t imagine NOT reading this on audio, if only to be able to hear the voices of certain characters like Max, Charles or Tyler. In the end I found it modern, smart, and effortlessly cool. I didn’t want to leave this no-name woman behind but was thoroughly happy with the way it ended. If you enjoy character studies with an air of mystery & intrigue I highly recommend 𝙁𝙖𝙠𝙚 𝙇𝙞𝙠𝙚 𝙈𝙚 𝘣𝘺 𝘽𝙖𝙧𝙗𝙖𝙧𝙖 𝘽𝙤𝙪𝙧𝙡𝙖𝙣𝙙. Narrated by 𝙓𝙚 𝙎𝙖𝙣𝙙𝙨! Read via Audible. Speed read: 1.25x (10hrs & 47mins) Read with Goodreads group 𝙎𝙪𝙨𝙥𝙚𝙣𝙨𝙚𝙛𝙪𝙡 𝘾𝙡𝙪𝙚𝙨 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙏𝙝𝙧𝙞𝙡𝙡𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙍𝙚𝙫𝙞𝙚𝙬𝙨.
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  • Darcia Helle
    January 1, 1970
    This is an instance where the book and I simply weren't meant to be together. The writing itself has a nice literary quality. It flows well and has great rhythm.But the story bored me. I know, I'm sorry. Of course I expected the plot to revolve around the art world, but I didn't expect to read such detailed minutiae about the painting process. I felt like I was back in my college art appreciation class, and that bored me as well.The "no-name painter" narrating the story remains without a name. I This is an instance where the book and I simply weren't meant to be together. The writing itself has a nice literary quality. It flows well and has great rhythm.But the story bored me. I know, I'm sorry. Of course I expected the plot to revolve around the art world, but I didn't expect to read such detailed minutiae about the painting process. I felt like I was back in my college art appreciation class, and that bored me as well.The "no-name painter" narrating the story remains without a name. I couldn't connect with anything about her or the characters whose lives she desperately aspired to be part of. And so I gave up about a third of the way in. At the start of the year, I vowed to stop forcing myself to finish a book I'm not enjoying, and so there you have it.*I received a review copy from the publisher via Amazon Vine.*
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  • cosmicpool
    January 1, 1970
    So much of this novel struck me in such deep and personal places. Bourland is wildly perceptive and her writing both expansive and incisive. It is a fucking tour de force.The main character's interior psychological landscape felt so real to me, maybe because it hit so close to home. Her desire to see herself reflected in those who are living the life that she wants for herself. Her lack of any familial or societal support both growing up and into her adult life. Her thoughts about her career and So much of this novel struck me in such deep and personal places. Bourland is wildly perceptive and her writing both expansive and incisive. It is a fucking tour de force.The main character's interior psychological landscape felt so real to me, maybe because it hit so close to home. Her desire to see herself reflected in those who are living the life that she wants for herself. Her lack of any familial or societal support both growing up and into her adult life. Her thoughts about her career and her place in the world, and later posterity. Her vacillation between wanting human connection and companionship, and turning away from it in disgust at the ways she is treated by almost everyone in her life -- and in those moments, her thought that the satisfaction of the work should be enough. Her feeling that, at her best, the work came through her, not from her. Her growth into accepting herself and having enough surety to not be threatened when the feelings of "I'm not good enough" arise. I am not doing Bourland's expressions of these things justice at all.Also, I am not an artist, but I am a very visual person, and the main character's attention to and appreciation of color and form throughout the book was something I didn't realize I was so hungry for. I'm now going to record a hodgepodge of other quotations and observations from the book below the fold, since they are mostly for the benefit of my memory and will very much be spoilery. Read the book!(view spoiler)[The glints you get as the story progresses of the main character's life before the opening of the narrative, the history that her reactions let leak through, is very revealing and beautifully done. When she first arrives at Pine City and Tyler leads her along the row of beautiful cabins, the way she immediately thinks about which type she would prefer, communicates such hope and such desire for belonging and the way, when her actual cabin is revealed to her, those hopes immediately crash through into despair perfectly communicates how fragile those feelings are for her."Maybe it was the contact high of everyone else's self-possession.""I was so young then, and very sheltered, not on purpose, not because someone was protecting me, but the opposite.""Cicadas rattled their exoskeletal cages like a jailed Christmas choir."(p. 82) "There's no other way to be. This is how the work happens -- when there is nothing else to distract you. The bursts come for hours every day, and then between then, you sleep, because working takes everything out of you -- opens a drain at the bottom of your stomach that lets the dishwater out. Then, later, some invisible hand refills you, and the cycle begins anew. It is the condition of my purpose. I am nothing else but this.""'There are no rules to this life,' Hayley said, every year, 'so you'd better write it all down or you'll never be able to remember.[...]'""It was rational to fear loneliness for all those years, I thought as I limped back to my truck. This place, an abandoned hotel turned abandoned retreat, had become in a single afternoon the physical manifestation of my isolation. Yet there was nowhere else for me to go.""Somehow it doesn't matter how old you grow, or how sophisticated you become. The people who impress themselves upon your consciousness at nineteen will never shrink or fade from memory. They will always be just a few steps ahead, and you'll both hate and worship them for it, because you cannot help but compare yourself.""I put my palms in the empty squares, touching each star in the constellation left from bygone picture nails, and wondered what was supposed to replace her."Her reflections on the origin of her relationship with Max. (p. 91-92) "She was my number one confidante, and I assumed I was hers[...] Yet Max's dreams were steps from her brownstone, something I did not fully understand until we were older. [...] Max came from privilege so elaborate it seems almost like an accident, but, of course, is not. [...] She made being an artist look so possible -- so attainable, the result of mere choice, of waking up and saying I think I'll be an artist, that seems right [...]""Mies-van-der-Hobbit-Hole""To recreate dead bodies and call them a work of art is to get people to ask exactly what they are paying for when they view an artwork."(p. 127-128) "This is it. This is the end: This is late-stage capitalism. My generation does not get to consider the things that other artists did. The 1950s, '60s, '70s -- those photos I used to fetishize of Helen Frankenthaler and Joan Mitchell in the Village -- they're a cruel joke to me now. I can't imagine meeting with the Art Workers' Coalition, like Lucy Lippard and Faith Ringgold did, and having demands -- not the meeting, that I can imagine. Rather, it is the having of demands that I cannot fathom. What would we ask for? And -- from whom? // Because -- now -- nothing exists outside the market. Everything I could ever afford was designed by sub-sub-contracted freelancers, manufactured by modern-day slaves, and shipped through oceans lined with trash by seasonal hourly worked whose schedule is controlled by a computer, whose commute is two hours each way, who are longing for health insurance, who will die in debt. I cannot imagine what it was like to resist before every emotion I had, including resistance, was commodified. What it was like before -- before we dug our own graves? Or, maybe more accurately, before someone else dug them and we woke up inside? Imagining resistance feels like a dream I cannot quite remember."(p. 132) "It's not a game [...] This is our life. We built our own universe."(p. 146) "For what is the point of a career, if not to legitimize yourself? // The point of a career as an artist, you might say, if you are lucky enough to have one, is to express yourself. Sure. Of course. Self-expression is the thrust of it. But it also becomes about identification; it becomes the bedrock of who you are as a person. I think there is something about accomplishment -- where you become so embittered by the realities of how hard it is to make it, to get anywhere at all, even to a place where you're broke and living in a rotting shack in upstate New York and sleeping on a borrowed fifty-year-old mattress -- that it is no longer possible to connect emotionally with anyone who had it easier than you or, more particularly, differently from you."(p. 160) "I reminded myself that I had felt the weight of chastity, once. I had felt the forced perspective of humility, the delirium of purity, the rage of temperance, the blinding resentment of obedience, the shame of modesty, the regret of prudence."(p. 161) "It wasn't lonely. It was alone. We were alone with ourselves, living inside the universes we created, agreeing not to disturb each other's fantasies, only to meet in the spaces between them."The role of the video of Stevie Nicks getting her makeup done and singing an early version of "Wild Heart." (p. 172) "'I watch this every day and so do a third of American women.'"(p. 177) "'How do you do that?' // I didn't know what to say // The real answer was that none of it was on purpose. My work was not the result of any artistic choice of intellectual legacy; instead it was the result of my inability to make any choices at all. Painting was a compulsion that I could barely control. I was not better than, as he'd said, the people who build houses out of bottle caps or covered their yards in cement garden gnomes, and if I'm being honest, the only threads that separated me from a life among the bottle-cap people were woven into the borrowed suit jacket of class distinction."(p. 200) "I got the sense that he didn't know many people with whom he could discuss the real details of his life"(p. 223) "It was like someone had taken the last two hundred years of culture, put it in a blender, pureed it into a sauce, and eaten it, only for this semiotic mash of ironic purposelessness to be then expelled back out once again. I nodded along, laughing when I was supposed to laugh and shaking my head when I was supposed to be outraged, at the money someone had been paid for a joke that wasn't that funny, or at how they hadn't been hailed as geniuses, and we might as well have been discussing television, or politics, because all of it centered on our reactions, the infinite hall of mirrors echoing our responses to and over each other, to the arts that had become our entertainment."(p. 341-342) "We had no idea how vulnerable she was. We thought class was this, like, idea, that you could change, that you could cast off. We genuinely didn't get it. She didn't have the tools we did. No home at Christmas was the tip of the iceberg. She didn't have the basic building blocks of what you need to be a successful person -- time management, emotional regulation, the ability to reflect on hindsight... She was not emotionally adept, or mature, in the ways that we had been raised to be. She lived in one long reaction. That was invisible to us at the time. All we saw was how charismatic she was."(p. 343) "What was the labor? Was the labor the work itself, or was it the identity, the standing in the gallery, being small and blond, working-class and nonthreatening? Was the labor being the object of other people's fantasies? Was it the emotional labor? Or was it the sculpture?"(p. 355) "It was a shame. She should have been here tonight. She shouldn't have been afraid to feel like a fraud. // I feel like one every day. It's the cost of doing business." (hide spoiler)]
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  • Denise Reed
    January 1, 1970
    I finished this book last night but needed some time to digest everything I had read. I went back and forth between 4 and 5 stars (4 stars only because I'm generally not a big art fan and some of the descriptions bogged me down), but in the end, it was so out of the realm of my expectations and so mind-bending, that I felt that alone was worthy of 5 stars.I think it's a bit difficult to classify this book - it is a suspense, but not really a suspense; it is a thriller, but not really a thriller, I finished this book last night but needed some time to digest everything I had read. I went back and forth between 4 and 5 stars (4 stars only because I'm generally not a big art fan and some of the descriptions bogged me down), but in the end, it was so out of the realm of my expectations and so mind-bending, that I felt that alone was worthy of 5 stars.I think it's a bit difficult to classify this book - it is a suspense, but not really a suspense; it is a thriller, but not really a thriller, so ID'ing a target audience is still up in the air for me. Overall though, I believe readers of mystery/suspense/thrillers/women's fiction will find it to be an intriguing read in many ways. The book delved so deeply in the dark, strange world of art that, at times, it lost me, but those moments were brief - just when I would feel my eyes start to glaze over slightly, it would suck me right back in, and I was fully immersed once again. I'm not always a big fan of first-person narratives, but this one worked for me. It captured the narrator at the height of a professional disaster - her already-marketed paintings were destroyed in a fire, and she has only 90 days in which to recreate them (without anyone letting the proverbial cat out of the bag that the original paintings were destroyed), all while also dragging her into a 20-year old conspiracy surrounding what happened to famed artist/sculptor, Carey Logan, whom the narrator had idolized since college. The narrator is offered the chance to live and work at an artists’ retreat called Pine City (also the name of the tight-knit group of young, beautiful artists, which included Carey Logan), where Carey lived and died. The narrator’s ability to complete her project evolves into a dependence upon finding out what happened to Carey and infiltrating her inner circle of friends; however, the more she gets to know the Pine City group of friends, the more she begins to question them and their motives, as well as the circumstances surrounding Carey's death. It all builds to a hectic climax that parallels the narrator finishing the paintings and solving the mystery of Carey's death. I didn't expect to be so drawn into the mystery surrounding Carey, but I was - to the extent that when all was finally revealed, it felt surreal and left my mind racing as to whether I should have been more in tune to some of the bread crumb clues along the way, because I was completely out in left field with my inclinations as to what happened to Carey and how it would all end. I figured out one part of the twist early on, but even with that, the ending still surprised me (for reasons I can't go in to without spoiling the book) and still left me immensely satisfied. That doesn't happen often, but when it does, I have to dismiss all other minor flaws of a book and say "bravo" to the author! Overall, a superb book that every time I put it down, I eagerly awaited the next time I would be able to pick it up again. 5 artsy, twisty stars for me!
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  • Lavender
    January 1, 1970
    I am not an artist and I have no idea what it means to be one. So I enjoyed genuinely peeking into the bohemian-like art world for a while. Our main protagonist stays without a name. She is a thirty-something artist in New York. She is still a nobody although she sold some of her paintings in the past. Now she is about to have her break-through with a new series of paintings. But all this paintings get destroyed in a fire. For some reasons she can’t admit that they are all lost. So she decides t I am not an artist and I have no idea what it means to be one. So I enjoyed genuinely peeking into the bohemian-like art world for a while. Our main protagonist stays without a name. She is a thirty-something artist in New York. She is still a nobody although she sold some of her paintings in the past. Now she is about to have her break-through with a new series of paintings. But all this paintings get destroyed in a fire. For some reasons she can’t admit that they are all lost. So she decides to repaint them in an incredible short time without anybody knowing it. Through an old friend she gets an invitation to Pine City, a group of artists who life in a house in the country. This has been her dreams since she started to be an artist. When she was young she witnessed this group performing their art. Their main protagonist was Carey Logan. She was the star and became the hero of out no-name artist. Three years ago Carey Logan committed suicide and Pine City clamed up about that and refuses to talk about her. Now our no-name artist is finally invited into this elusive retreat. But Pine City is a disappointment. It is nothing like she imagined it. And they are still not willing to speak about Carey Logan. This story is really about art. There are very detailed descriptions what out artist needs for her paintings and how she does them. She is not just painting neat little aquarelles. She makes huge thinks with a lot of material. I would have loved to see them. There is also a lot of talk about other artist which art you can google. I enjoyed that but I also skipped some of the crafty details about producing the paintings. It was sometimes a little bit much.It was nice to hangout in this world. The characters are not very multi-dimensional and I found our main character to be whiny and needy. She has obviously the potential but she is full of self-doubt and compares herself to Carey Logan all the time. She lacks the enormous self-esteem every other artist in this book has but takes herself far too serious. There is a lot of telling in this book. Not much happens. For the first half our no-name painter is simply telling us how she got where she is now. Even when she arrives at Pine City she is just painting all the time and yearning for the other members to accept her. Not much action here. Toward the end there is a little twist and you see what Pine City was all about. That was nice but also our artist was a bit tiring with her fixation on unraveling the mystery about Carey. “Fake Like Me” was an entertaining read, a little bit on the slower side but with a compelling subject. I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
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  • Kate
    January 1, 1970
    This is a difficult novel for me to review. When I spotted it on Amazon Vine, I could have sworn that they had listed it as a graphic novel, but apart from one map, the ARC has no other illustrations, or suggestions that there would be any art in the final work. Now, admittedly, this could well have been my mistake, so my disappointment on not being able to see how an ARC graphic novel would be presented is all mine. Having said that, I was intrigued by the subject matter. I am certainly not an This is a difficult novel for me to review. When I spotted it on Amazon Vine, I could have sworn that they had listed it as a graphic novel, but apart from one map, the ARC has no other illustrations, or suggestions that there would be any art in the final work. Now, admittedly, this could well have been my mistake, so my disappointment on not being able to see how an ARC graphic novel would be presented is all mine. Having said that, I was intrigued by the subject matter. I am certainly not an expert in art, in any way, but I do enjoy art and like any creative process, it intrigues me. The story follows a young, female artist whose home and studio are destroyed in a fire, taking with it her latest pieces for an exhibition. She tells her gallery that only one of the pieces was destroyed, meaning that she has to recreate her entire collection on a seemingly impossible timescale, and with nowhere to paint them, to boot. Against this backdrop, is the story of Pine City; a group of five artists who lived together, but out of all of them, Carey Logan was the most successful. Tragically, Carey committed suicide. Our un-named protagonist was a fan of Carey's work; she aspired to reach the same heights that Carey did, so imagine her delight when she ends up living in the same studio that Carey inhabited. "Fake Like Me" is definitely not a bad book, so I struggled in some ways to pinpoint why it didn't seem to be a good match for me. Looking back, I think it was because of the amount of detail there is within the plot. Some of this was interesting, some less so, but regardless it left me feeling as though this story was one that you had to plough through. Like an oil colour painting, there seemed to be so much detail, that it left layers and layers for you to try and battle through. But, rather than these layers binding together to create the bigger picture, here it felt that at times the layers distracted from the main plot. Certainly, for me, it felt as though it took a long time for the plot to truly get going and this meant that I found the book distracting and difficult to engage with.Again, I want to reiterate that I am not saying that this is not a well written novel; just that it wasn't one that worked for me.
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  • Sharon LeBond
    January 1, 1970
    “The history of art is littered with the bodies of dead women.” 3.5 stars rounded up to 4.First up, I need to mention that this book is not a fast-paced, dark-and-twisty thriller as some of the marketing may suggest. It is however, an impressive examination of the life of a struggling artist and a fascinating satire of the New York art world. The unnamed artist at the center of the novel is on the cusp of the most important gallery show of her career when a fire destroys all of her paintings. Sh “The history of art is littered with the bodies of dead women.” 3.5 stars rounded up to 4.First up, I need to mention that this book is not a fast-paced, dark-and-twisty thriller as some of the marketing may suggest. It is however, an impressive examination of the life of a struggling artist and a fascinating satire of the New York art world. The unnamed artist at the center of the novel is on the cusp of the most important gallery show of her career when a fire destroys all of her paintings. She lies and tells the gallery that only one was destroyed, she then has three months to attempt to remake everything that was lost. Her big break comes when she gets a chance to use studio space at a famous, upstate, art collective known as "Pine City." She goes there knowing that Pine City has some secrets, it was the home of her artistic hero, Carey Logan, a widely successful sculptor who a few years earlier walked out into the lake surrounding Pine City and drowned.Our narrator senses there is something "off" about the stories surrounding Carey's death, and as I write this brief synopsis I know this is sounding like the set-up to a thriller--but that's not what this book is. Yes, there are secrets and some clues sprinkled throughout Pine City; some things are not quite as they seem, but this is a slow burn. The book is less about the mystery of Carey Logan's disappearance and more a meditation on the physical and emotional toll of trying to carve out a viable career as a female painter. Putting the mystery aspect aside, what really struck me was the author's deft descriptions of class. At every point you are keenly aware of the income disparity between wealthy collectors; the trust-fund art students who have unlimited budgets for materials and travel; and then people like our narrator, working-class strivers with great talent who work incredibly hard but may never get ahead. If you know me, you know I deeply appreciate novels that attempt to talk about paychecks, about class, about wanting things that may forever be beyond your reach. This novel does that. A thought-provoking meditation on art and the artist.
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    I won this ARC on a giveaway posted here on goodreads.I just wanted to say I tried. I tried for 20(+) days to get myself to open this book and read but that didn't happen too often. If you haven't guessed I DNF this book, I made a deal with myself that if I didn't finish it by the day before it's release I could drop it. I'd also like to point out I semi-know the ending considering I skimmed and skipped the last 200ish pages and therefore I read enough.Fake Like Me is a poorly advertised not mys I won this ARC on a giveaway posted here on goodreads.I just wanted to say I tried. I tried for 20(+) days to get myself to open this book and read but that didn't happen too often. If you haven't guessed I DNF this book, I made a deal with myself that if I didn't finish it by the day before it's release I could drop it. I'd also like to point out I semi-know the ending considering I skimmed and skipped the last 200ish pages and therefore I read enough.Fake Like Me is a poorly advertised not mystery thriller book that follows a no named artist (who literally doesn't have a name, which I kind of thought was cool) who's living space/studio burns down in a freak fire and all her paintings with it. She then has to recreate all her artwork in 3 months or ruin her fledgling career before its fully even begun. This artist is able to get herself a gig at an exclusive retreat owned by THE cool kid artists known as Pine City, whom she is obsessed with. (She stans Carey Logan the most because she connected more with her through her artwork/style.) The retreat isn't what Mc thought it'd be like, there was supposed mystery on Carey Logan's suicide which Mc pondered a lot about.What I didn't like-pacing (so gosh darn slow, holy cow)- Mc constant self-pity (I get it, but stop reminding me of things I already know thank you kindly)- Mystery/thriller story was not present leaving me disappointed -Just boring, and unengaging in general Overall this book just wasn't for me. I can understand the appeal there were parts that I did find interesting just most of it wasn't enough to make me want more.
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  • Robin Loves Reading
    January 1, 1970
    While worried that she’ll never paint again, an unnamed narrator has a breakthrough. She begins to come out of her shell. She was rather successful, and even begins to travel with her work. She becomes extreme interested in learning about another artist, Carey Logan. She learns that Carey has a very similar style. As a matter of fact, the closer she looks at Carey’s work, she noticed that Carey used a model of hers in a recent sculpture.Our unnamed artist is quite determined to see who Carey is While worried that she’ll never paint again, an unnamed narrator has a breakthrough. She begins to come out of her shell. She was rather successful, and even begins to travel with her work. She becomes extreme interested in learning about another artist, Carey Logan. She learns that Carey has a very similar style. As a matter of fact, the closer she looks at Carey’s work, she noticed that Carey used a model of hers in a recent sculpture.Our unnamed artist is quite determined to see who Carey is and what she is all about, so she is shocked to discover that Carey has just committed suicide. So the narrator does all she can to learn who Carey actually was. However, she suffers a tragedy. Her apartment goes up in flames, and all of her paintings have been destroyed.Now homeless and without any money, she must recreate her art, or her career will be ruined! Hopefully, she will be up to the task. While in the process of working hard, she jumps into the mystery as to who Carey was and what really happened as to how she lost her life.As I truly have no interest in art, this story did not do a lot for me. What kept me interested was the rush of getting the commissioned work done, as well as the personal relationships that grew during the course of this story.Many thanks to Grand Central Publishing and to NetGalley for this ARC to review in exchange for my honest opinion.
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  • Lauren
    January 1, 1970
    I loved Bourland's first novel I'll Eat When I'm Dead, but also understood why it was poorly received overall. Her follow-up, Fake Like Me is smoother and more accessible. Although I preferred the former, I would be more likely to recommend the latter.While IEWID took place in the fashion magazine world, Fake Like Me takes place in the younger, hipper side of the art world in New York circa 2011. Our narrator is an up-and-coming painter who has prepared for her "big time" show for two ye I loved Bourland's first novel I'll Eat When I'm Dead, but also understood why it was poorly received overall. Her follow-up, Fake Like Me is smoother and more accessible. Although I preferred the former, I would be more likely to recommend the latter.While IEWID took place in the fashion magazine world, Fake Like Me takes place in the younger, hipper side of the art world in New York circa 2011. Our narrator is an up-and-coming painter who has prepared for her "big time" show for two years. This show is the key to getting her out of the starving artist status. In the final months of prep, a fire burns her studio to the ground and all of the art with it. Although it's a no-no, she decides to re-create the entire collection in a few months. She works her way into a artist collective upstate to do so in secrecy, lest her pieces be deemed worthless because of the timing. While there, she encounters some figures well-known in her world, and begins to poke around to learn more about the mysterious death of a famous artist she admired there. I really liked the writing and thought the main character was wonderfully fleshed out. Just like I warned people not to read her first book if you weren't up for hearing a TON about fashion, same goes for painting with this book. I'm the last person who would ever successfully wield a paint brush, so I enjoyed learning about that world.
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  • Jasmine's Tea
    January 1, 1970
    This novel was definitely marketed wrong -- nowhere did I find the mysterious, dark and thrilling genre that was advertised. Instead, the focus was on female perseverance and the process of creating art in an almost obsessive manner. The novel is rife with in-depth details regarding artistry and its associated techniques, tools, and struggles to succeed. While much of the time these details were lost on me, I did acknowledge that a reader either interested in art or an artist themselves would ga This novel was definitely marketed wrong -- nowhere did I find the mysterious, dark and thrilling genre that was advertised. Instead, the focus was on female perseverance and the process of creating art in an almost obsessive manner. The novel is rife with in-depth details regarding artistry and its associated techniques, tools, and struggles to succeed. While much of the time these details were lost on me, I did acknowledge that a reader either interested in art or an artist themselves would gain a lot from the extensive knowledge. Additionally, female readers will have the ability to see themselves within the empowered character development. I enjoyed reading the novel enough, but almost gave up a few times. The plot didn't develop very quickly, and the unnamed artists' intense obsession with Carey and the remaining members of Pine City became a bit tired. However, the conclusion wrapped up nicely and I didn't regret seeing the story through until the end. It was an interesting read with a unique concept, to say the least. I think this novel would make an excellent movie; the author's descriptions of Pine City and the art itself would be fascinating to see coming into fruition on the screen. I'm definitely interested in reading what others have to say about this one. And that's the tea.
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  • Claire
    January 1, 1970
    Barabara Bourland loves looking at the world with satire claws. This book looks into the art world and how fake it can be. There is a large part dedicated to the main character working as a painter and all the insecurities that went along with not being established. When all of the main character's work burns down in a freak accident she has to recreate her entire exhibition in three months without anyone knowing. While she does this she chases after the phantom of Cary Logan, the artist who the Barabara Bourland loves looking at the world with satire claws. This book looks into the art world and how fake it can be. There is a large part dedicated to the main character working as a painter and all the insecurities that went along with not being established. When all of the main character's work burns down in a freak accident she has to recreate her entire exhibition in three months without anyone knowing. While she does this she chases after the phantom of Cary Logan, the artist who the main character always feels like is always ahead of her even after her death.I love this book that it took me awhile to even write a review for why I loved it. It's so realistically personal to measure your work to another persons who you've never met.
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  • Margaret
    January 1, 1970
    I absolutely loved this book! It started off maybe as a 4 star book, but by the second half I was hooked and couldn't put it down. I was drawn into the characters and the story, especially the subtle commentary on women's roles within society. Perhaps my favorite part of the story that I found the most fascinating was learning about the creation of art. I don't really know much about the production of art, but I loved Bourland's vivid descriptions of the labor that went into the protagonist's ar I absolutely loved this book! It started off maybe as a 4 star book, but by the second half I was hooked and couldn't put it down. I was drawn into the characters and the story, especially the subtle commentary on women's roles within society. Perhaps my favorite part of the story that I found the most fascinating was learning about the creation of art. I don't really know much about the production of art, but I loved Bourland's vivid descriptions of the labor that went into the protagonist's art. I really enjoyed the description of the materials and the creation of pigments and paints. Besides all of that, I also really enjoyed the characters and the little bits of intrigue that build to ending. This really is the perfect summer book.
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  • Sue
    January 1, 1970
    The thing I really love about reading is I get to fall in to worlds I would never otherwise experience. -At once a twisted psychological portrait of a woman crumbling under unimaginable pressure and a razor-sharp satire of the contemporary art scene, FAKE LIKE ME is a dark, glamorous, and addictive story of good intentions gone awry.-Once again this summer, I picked up a book with no expectations and came away loving the novel. Fake Like Me is so smart, it’s intense and unputdownable. I don’t kn The thing I really love about reading is I get to fall in to worlds I would never otherwise experience. -At once a twisted psychological portrait of a woman crumbling under unimaginable pressure and a razor-sharp satire of the contemporary art scene, FAKE LIKE ME is a dark, glamorous, and addictive story of good intentions gone awry.-Once again this summer, I picked up a book with no expectations and came away loving the novel. Fake Like Me is so smart, it’s intense and unputdownable. I don’t know anything about art. I’m a science nerd who can only draw organic molecules (or maybe a stick figure. But I was totally enthralled with the art process described throughout the book.
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  • Krista Borrero
    January 1, 1970
    Superb Summer read: Art world/artists’ colony, Hudson Valley, blurred lines, questionable choices, ambiguous relationships....great divide between the haves and the have nots. Privilege is showcased throughout the novel and the struggle to break free from class origins. What exactly does it take to achieve greatness? There’s deeper meaning hidden within every page. My advice is to go slow and soak it all in. It’s wonderful! The titles of the art pieces and the chapters of the book coincide, plot Superb Summer read: Art world/artists’ colony, Hudson Valley, blurred lines, questionable choices, ambiguous relationships....great divide between the haves and the have nots. Privilege is showcased throughout the novel and the struggle to break free from class origins. What exactly does it take to achieve greatness? There’s deeper meaning hidden within every page. My advice is to go slow and soak it all in. It’s wonderful! The titles of the art pieces and the chapters of the book coincide, plotting out our path to insanity. How far would you go, and how much would you give, for the sake of art?
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  • Jules
    January 1, 1970
    It's not a thriller, but I found the book really gripping. The Narrator has 3-4 months to finish 7 paintings that were destroyed when her loft. Along the way, she finds herself unraveling the mystery of her artistic hero's suicide as she works at the same artist colony. The book reflects on the creative process, artistic techniques and how hard it is to be a successful artist (with some biting criticisms about artists who start with privilege.) I couldn't stop listening to the audio book but unf It's not a thriller, but I found the book really gripping. The Narrator has 3-4 months to finish 7 paintings that were destroyed when her loft. Along the way, she finds herself unraveling the mystery of her artistic hero's suicide as she works at the same artist colony. The book reflects on the creative process, artistic techniques and how hard it is to be a successful artist (with some biting criticisms about artists who start with privilege.) I couldn't stop listening to the audio book but unfortunately the rant at the end irritated me so much I can't give it a full 5 stars.
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  • Jamie Klingler
    January 1, 1970
    Woah. I’m pretty blown away. Picked it up a few months back and didn’t get beyond the first chapter or two—- and then re-engaged and was gripped. The art world isn’t one I know at all, but this book nails the superficial constructs of image and trying to make it. Dark and funny and very readable.
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  • Regan
    January 1, 1970
    I was anticipating a white knuckle mystery. Instead it read more like a cross between a rather boring memoir and women's fiction. The unnamed narrator seems to carry on her own personal pity party through most of the story. The very end, when the solution to the mystery is revealed there is a spark of what I was expecting but it quickly faded.
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  • Cindy H.
    January 1, 1970
    While I only read this a few weeks ago, I already forgot EVERYTHING 😳but I remember I thought the writing was good, so I gave this book an extra star.
  • Tasha Pum
    January 1, 1970
    I won this book in the give away! I really appreciated this story, it came at the perfect time.
  • Dawn
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars. Lots of fun if you are an Art aficionado.
  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Meticulously researched, over-the-top, witty, edge-of-your-seat novel. A compelling story about creativity, connection, and commodification.
  • Christina Wickert
    January 1, 1970
    Cool read about a fictional art group. Enjoyed it.
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