Thursday, September 12, 2013

GRAVITY OF BIRDS by Tracy Guzeman

I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher.

THE GRAVITY OF BIRDS combines some of my favorite themes: art and family secrets. Famous artist Thomas Bayber calls on his friend, art historian Dennis Fincher, to help sell a painting he has kept hidden for years. The two men ask authenticator Stephen Jameson to help them.  The possibility of a heretofore unknown Bayber work is an exciting prospect for Fincher and Jameson as well as for the auction house but Bayber's painting comes with strings attached.  The two men must track down the pair of sisters depicted in the painting before Bayber will allow it to go to auction.  As Fincher and Jameson attempt to track down the whereabouts of Alice and Natalie Kessler, Guzeman takes the reader back and forth through time as the backstory of the relationship between Bayber and the two women is revealed.

There was something really beautiful about this story. I loved how a painting could express so much and could become a tangible record of the history of a tangled group of relationships.  There is a lot of sadness within the story but it ends on a note of hope and possibility. It's difficult to say more without giving away too much.

BOTTOM LINE: Recommended. A lovely tale of art and secrets and family.

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