Sunday, October 10, 2010

Priceless-Olivia Darling

Olivia Darling
Dell, Oct 26 2010, $7.99
ISBN: 9780440245155

At London’s Ludbrook auction house, avaricious Nat Wilde and amorally ambitious Lizzy Duffy may have a boss subordinate relationship; in which each uses the other for personal gains. Meanwhile New York based Ehrenpreis auction house sends across the pond their number two art expert, morally ambitious Carrie Klein, to open up the London store.

Meanwhile in Cornwall, artist Serena Macdonald was eking out a meager living for her and her daughter Katie to barely survive as a portraitist paining family pets. When a neighbor dies, Serena meets her late friend’s youngest son Julian who knows Nat. Soon a simple mistaken error turns into a lucrative business when Serena displays her talent of being able to paint the works of the Old Masters.

This is a well written satirical contemporary with solid flawed characters. Priceless lacks the credibility of the author’s darling Vintage. With nods to the movies Breakfast at Tiffany’s and the Art of Love but instead filled with avenging females (rather than Holly Golightly, or Dick van Dyke and James Garner), the story line is fun to read as the audience will wonder just who will be left standing on the streets of London and New York when the scam explodes.

Harriet Klausner

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