Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Art Whisperer by Charlotte and Aaron Elkins

Whoever said that life around fine art is dull? It is not dull for Alix London. Called in to help restore a few paintings for a museum in Palm Springs she thinks that this will be an easy assignment. She couldn’t be more wrong. Soon things will go from bad to worse. 

Alix London is an art restorer with a connoisseur’s eye. This can be both a blessing and a curse. On the blessing side it helps her to restore works of art with great precision. It also allows her to act as an excellent advisor for people wanting to build their own art collections. On the other hand it can be quite a curse. She can look at a painting and get a bad feeling. That feeling always means that the painting is a forgery. Her problem is that she can’t always figure out what is bothering her. This time she just happens to look at a Pollock hanging in a museum where she is restoring some works scheduled for sale. She can’t quite place her finger on what is wrong with it, but there is just something about it. Within hours of raising a question about the Pollock there is an attempt on her life. This is just the beginning of what will be Alix’s most dangerous adventure to date.

The Art Whisperer is just the enjoyable, lighthearted mystery we have come to expect from the Alix London series. All of our favorite characters are here and we get a little more development each time. We have Alix’s father Geoff, a one-time curator and forger. Geoff’s old friend and accomplice Tiny is along for the ride. Alix’s friend Chris, the multi-millionaire tech expert, makes an appearance with her usual flair. Of course Alix, once again, works with FBI Special Agent Ted Ellsworth. She is worried about her relationship with Ted. She still has a crush on him, but after the way she spoke to him at the end of the last novel she doesn’t know if he wants anything to do with her.

As always the characters are enjoyable. The story is paced nicely and well written. Alix London really does deserve her own television series. This would be an enjoyable show to watch and it would actually be quite educational. It isn’t often that one gets to hear about great works of art in mystery literature. At 260 pages it is an easy book to read, perfect for taking with you on vacation. If you haven’t read the Alix London books before you should dive right in. If you have read the first two then you don’t need to hesitate for a minute. Pick this up and enjoy.

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