The Muralist

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In 1940, Alizee Benoit, a Works Progress Administration artist is doing everything in her power to obtain visas for her Jewish family trapped in France. The emotional upheavals in her life fuel her artistic creativity, influencing one of the most powerful American art movements. As events coalesce around her Alizee is overwhelmed by her present and her past, leading her to take drastic actions that reverberate through her family and the progressive art world. In 2015, Alizee’s great-niece stumbles across portions of a painting hidden behind newly discovered Abstract Expressionist artwork. As she investigates the origins of the artwork, she uncovers secrets her family has kept hidden for almost three-quarters of a century.

More than another fictionalization of history, The Muralist examines one of the most tumultuous periods in U.S. history. Delving into multiple issues of the time B.A. Shapiro explores the emotional and psychological toll great art can wreak.  She personalizes the plight of European refugees as they flee the encroaching Nazi Germany as well as the families in the U.S. struggling for their safe passage. The real and fictional characters are well developed and engaging – I was more than a little disappointed to learn not only is Alizee completely fictional, but so is her art. Anyone who enjoys art, history, politics, and mystery will enjoy The Muralist.


Reviewed By:

Author B. A. Shapiro
Star Count 4/5
Format Hard
Page Count 352 pages
Publisher Algonquin
Publish Date 2015-Nov-03
ISBN 9781616203573
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue December 2015
Category Mystery, Crime & Thriller
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