Reader reviews and comments on The Art Forger, plus links to write your own review.

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The Art Forger

by B A. Shapiro

The Art Forger by B A. Shapiro
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  • First Published:
    Oct 2012, 368 pages
    Paperback:
    May 2013, 384 pages

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There are currently 24 reader reviews for The Art Forger
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Power Reviewer Becky H

self-fulfillling prophecy run pampant
This book will have you thinking about ALL the times you (or others) are influenced by what you EXPECT rather than what you actually see or hear or experience.
Although Shapiro uses real artist’s names and works, the novel is only loosely – very loosely – based on an actual robbery. Claire has been blackballed because of art work she has done that was attributed to another and hailed as a masterpiece. Now she is asked to copy (forge?) a masterpiece by Degas that is part of the well-known heist of artwork from the Gardner Museum. I enjoyed learning the “art’ of forgery as much as I enjoyed the plot of the novel. Claire is believable and likeable. The work of the artist is written so that even artistic ignoramuses (like me) can understand the process.
The plot is engrossing and keeps your attention even through the art process sections. Book groups will have a field day with self-fulfilling prophecy, ethics in the work place, art appreciation, collecting objects (especially valuable ones from other cultures), family secrets, black balling, stolen art and over reaching police. A visit to an art museum, especially one with several Degas works, would be a great introduction or wrap-up for this novel. A corollary discussion might be our attitudes towards novels by “best-selling” authors.
Power Reviewer Louise J

Phenomenal Reading!
The Art Forger is not only entertaining but teaches us about the world of art and for someone like me who knew nothing of the subject when I picked up the book, has really opened my eyes and provided me with a lot of fascinating information that I had no previous knowledge of.

This entire story is phenomenal and ingeniously plotted. I thought I had it figured out but I was dead wrong! I thought Ms. Shapiro presented a well-rounded tale of this famous art heist and would highly recommend The Art Forger to anyone. There is mystery, suspense, love, and betrayal all packed into one fast-paced, seamless read. Well-done!!
Debra V. (Kenosha, WI)

The Art Forger
Loved this book -- a well written look inside the art world from the artist perspective. The technical aspect of art forgery was facinating and was probably the best part of the story for me. Would recommend this book to anyone who loves art as well as a good mystery.
Kenan R. (Liberty, MO)

Excellent Read
This book came to me as I was plodding through a tedious library book. How great to go from barely-getting-through-it to a book that I almost couldn't put down! Not only does Shapiro offer us a glimpse into the world struggling artists, but we get a fascinating look at the techniques and skills of high end art forgers.

With a protagonist I genuinely liked, enough plot twists to keep me turning pages, and a reality-based framework, this book was hugely enjoyable to read. hapiro kept me entertained and intrigued from page one. I have already given it to my husband to read, and will highly recommend it to others. On a side note - I am now looking at paintings in galleries and museums in a completely different light. The wet on wet technique of modern artists vs. the wet on dry of previous generations; the luminescent quality of oils - I will never look at a Degas the same way again!
Elizabeth (Salem, Oregon)

Interesting
I read this in stops and starts until about halfway through even though I found the descriptions of copying/forging a painting to be fascinating. But once the story started moving, I finished the book quickly. The writing itself was good but I thought Claire was too naive for a woman of her age and experience and the plot developments predictable, however I still would recommend the book.
Barbara S. (Glen Ellyn, Illinois)

The Art Forger
Barbara Shapiro's book, The Art Forger finds the painting of Edgar Degas, Woman Leaving Her Bath as the main character. The amazing plot of this book is the fate of an artist who was asked to copy this picture. The plot thickens with a hidden original copy of this picture.

Ms. Shapiro picked up her pallet and came up with an enthralling picture story of the world of artists, paintings, greed, copying and forging that will keep her readers on the edge of their seats. This "can't put it down story" painted by Barbara Shapiro in the Art Forger is an exciting and informative story. The characters in the book are described with depth and with understanding of the complex situation they find themselves involved in.
Barbara H. (Richmond, IN)

The Art Forger
The Art Forger was a learning experience for this reader. The passion of the artist, the difficulty of attaining success, and the manipulation of the market are all here. Also demonstrated are the steps to authenticating a famous work. However, the learning had the added suspense of the reason for the forgery--is it right to do something wrong to achieve a right? Each step in the creation of the forgery is suspenseful--will the method work? Then, of course, the suspense of success for the artist, the relationship with the gallery owner, the result of the forgery--so many things to engage any reader. The book is an entire package.
BEE021 (TAMPA, FL)

Mystery, romance, and art forgery techniques
This novel is well written with an excellent plot that includes mystery, romance and well-drawn characters that you come to care about. The narrator is Claire, a young artist who makes her living painting reproductions of art masterpieces by Edgar Degas and others, and the reader will learn a lot about how artists apply paint to canvas; and as part of the mystery of the novel, the reader comes to understand the technical process of "layering", "glazing" and "rendering", as well as how an artist uses line, shadow and movement. Further, the reader will learn about the history of art forgery and that some art experts today think that the best forgeries are still hanging on museum walls....a page turner that I highly recommend.
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