Title: The Horse’s Arse
Author: Laura Gascoigne
Release Date: April 4, 2017
Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Goodreads’ Rating: 4 / 5 stars
My Rating: ♥♥♥
Links: Goodreads || Amazon
Patrick Phelan is an ageing artist who has never made it big but who somehow manages to live on air in a North London suburb.
When not running art classes for amateurs, Patrick wrestles in the shed at the bottom of his garden with his life’s work: a series of visionary canvases of The Seven Seals.
When his wheeler-dealer son Marty turns up with a commission from a rich client for some copies of paintings by modern masters, Phelan reluctantly agrees; it means money for his ex-wife Moira. However the deal with Marty is, typically, not what it seems.
What follows is a complex chain of events involving fakery, fraud, kidnapping, murder, the
Russian Mafia and a cast of dubious art world characters. A contemporary spin on Joyce Cary’s classic satire The Horse’s Mouth, The Horse’s Arse by Laura Gascoigne is a crime thriller-cum-comic-fable that poses the serious question: where does art go from here?
* I received this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my opinion or review of this book *
I first want to say that I don’t know anything about art, so I did find it a little hard to follow in some places – mainly in the beginning, where there was a lot of talk about the different styles of different artist, etc.
We are mainly following a man named Pat – an artist, who never seems to catch his big break. He also teaches novice artists in his shed on the side of painting his main works – The Seven Seals. His son comes to him and asks him to paint a number of copies of other paintings to which he makes a nice sum of money.
Apart from the beginning of the book being very full of art lingo that I was not fluent in, I also found it quite difficult to keep up with the writing. I found it to be quite disjointed and there were so many different characters introduced in very little time, I really had to concentrate on getting the details straight in my head.
Overall, it was enjoyable – it had a great plot and characters (once you got to know who was who and what they were all doing in the story).
Thank you for stopping by to read my review of The Horse’s Arse by Laura Gascoigne. I hope you enjoyed it. Until next time, happy reading!
About the Author:
Currently living in Hampstead, North London, Laura Gascoigne has worked as an art journalist for over twenty years, editing Artists & Illustrators (1994-1999) before going freelance. Laura was born in Cairo in 1950, the daughter of a bookseller and an Italian teacher, and grew up in Brussels and Cambridge before studying Classics at Oxford University. Her sister is the writer Marina Warner. Surrounded as a child by the paintings her father collected, she has always had a passion for art and when not writing about it, she paints.