Book Review | The Drawing Lesson

Title: The Drawing Lesson

Author: Mary E. Martin

My Review:

You wouldn’t think the art world could pick you up and carry you away but, surprisingly, Mary Martin manages to do just that. Her characters are driven and emotional. Repeating themes of life and death intertwine and give the main character, Alexander Wainwright, much to think about. Alexander has just won the Turner Prize, the highest honor for contemporary art, for his painting The Hay Wagon. A breathtaking scene of a barnyard at night, it shines with a light that most artists only dream of capturing on canvas. But, as in most things in life, not everybody likes it.

Rinaldo, a conceptual artist, believes that Alexander’s style of painting is anything but contemporary and his own work should have won. He sets out to destroy Alexander’s work and, ultimately, destroy the artist as well. Alexander becomes despondent, losing both his muse and his ability to capture the light that so many people admire. He sets out on a journey to rediscover himself after he begins to paint small troll-like creatures in his work. They horrify him as much as the fascinate him.

From London to Venice, Toronto to New York, Alexander is trying to find that which he’s lost. With the help of friends and hindered by Rinaldo, Alexander goes from being on the top of the world to the deepest pits of Hell. His art and his sanity are both at risk and Rinaldo is determined to see that both are destroyed forever. This is the first in a trilogy and I hope that I get to read more of Alexander’s story. A marvelous book.

*I received a copy of this book to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this novel.*


Myla is a life-long resident of Nova Scotia, Canada. She is married with two sons. A self-described bookworm, her hobbies also include knitting, painting, photography and music.

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