The Art Forger – B.A. Shapiro

The Art Forger – B.A. Shapiro
Under normal circumstances i would never pick up a book to do with Art, I just don’t find the subject matter interesting. There is just something about Art that turns a normal person into some pompus doofus. Walking around acting superior to others. Hell I’ve seen it first hand, a good mate from high school somehow becomes drawn into the world of art, he starts speaking different. He feels literature, film, music are all inferior to art and those that don’t agree with him a less cultured.  This coming from the guy who challenged me to a race to chug a half litre bottle of maple syrup. But anyway i kept this perception of art people going for many years.
Anyway that’s enough of my coloured view of the art world now onto how i picked up this book.  A friend of mine shared an instagram pic that caught my attention a few months ago. It was of a book wrapped in brown paper with string and it had the themes of the book written down the side. I thought how cool was that. Its from a site called on this site you pick a genre or theme and you get sent a random book. There motto is “don’t judge a book by its cover.” Which is rather the polar opposite of how i choose a new author. I searched  through the site it had allot of weird and unappealing themes. Like 1930’s Hollywood or African Fantasy. But i was in the mood for a thriller so i choose that option. A few days later this magnificently wrapped book with string and tag arrived i was quite excited on the paper wrap the themes were listed
Ingeniously  Plotted
Literary Thriller
Foolish choices
I was thinking yes just what i wanted but then i saw the last two
Fine art
Love and painting
At this point i was loosing that excitement, i then unwrapped the book. The book was about an artist who earns a living copying paintings(legitimately). One day she is delivered a painting believed stolen many years earlier and enters a deal to copy it for a one woman show at a gallery. As she begins her research before she paints she comes to believe that the painting that was stolen is actually a forgery
Naturally it got placed at the bottom of my to read pile. Which at this stage is getting close to 100 books. I really need to read faster or stop buying so many books, oh the dilemma!
A few months past and i really wanted to try my luck with that website again but before i do i felt i should at least read that book.
As is almost always the case the female author inserts a love story into the book, i was glad it was rather brief so it didn’t detract from the plot too much. It bored me whenever the characters were talking about art or art galleries however the plot i liked, it kept me  engaged. That’s what i like about thrillers the twists trying to figure it out before the character does.
And this book had that, it did give me a peak into the art world and to no surprise the characters act exactly as i would stereotypical believe, pompus and superior. but the author really has done some research into this topic, her knowledge of forgery techniques really stunned me and that level of knowledge really made up for the the love story line i was forced to endure.
Did i like this book? surprisingly yes considering it had the two most hated themes of mine, art and love/romance, would i read another like this one? No, i think the chances of finding a book as cleverly crafted as this one and with only brief forays into a love/romance story is quite small
But on the other hand i think picked the perfect book for this themes. I thoroughly recommend you all to visit and give that site a go.

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars – Ian Doescher

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars – Ian Doescher
I have never been a fan of Shakespeare. If someone even mentions it or suggest watching one i groan in agony. People get all pious and suggest he is the greatest playwright, that’s but their opinion. I’m not a fan of plays so i have done my best to avoid it and am quite proud to have not touched any of his works since leaving high school. Then came a moment of reflection when i saw these books. I thought if my hatred of Shakespeare and contemplated its route cause and I have come to think this might stem from the fact in high school our English Teacher force fed us Shakespeare  for 3 years and then they do what all all English teachers do and over analyse  a work to take the fun out of it.
So i thought maybe my attitude towards Shakespeare was coloured not by its strength as an artistic work but by my dislike of the teacher and her forcing us to do it. (Other classes studied star wars. Man i would of nailed that one but then also ran the risk of them over analyzing it and taking the fun out if it for me) anyway when i saw these books I’m like why not give it a go if i can tolerate the language they use then perhaps it wouldn’t be too difficult to transition to Shakespeare.
Boy was i wrong, Straight away my eyes drifted over the harsh use of Early Modern English. Memories came flooding back of my dislike for this style and how painful i find to read it. Yet i pushed forward, the books were quite small and easy to demolish and yet the pain never subsided.
After finishing all 6 books i can still affirm my dislike of Shakespeare and yet i fully understand now its because of the awful language style used.  Yes i know that’s how people spoke. Yes i know people class it as the greatest work in fiction. But don’t forget the populace used to think the world was flat. So its not a stretch to think they too can be wrong about Shakespeare
Perhaps if someone translated his works into proper modern English i’d give him another crack but at this point i’m going to keep Shakespeare in the same  category as romance novels,  that of  rubbish with no use other than to be fuel for when a zombie apocalypse strikes and we run out of wood to fuel our cooking and keep warm