Fake Like Me

Fake Like Me

At once a twisted psychological portrait of a woman crumbling under unimaginable pressure and a razor-sharp satire of the contemporary art scene, FAKE LIKE ME is a dark, glamorous, and addictive story of good intentions gone awry, from the critically acclaimed author of I'll Eat When I'm Dead. What really happened to Carey Logan?After a fire decimates her studio, including...

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Title:Fake Like Me
Author:Barbara Bourland
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Fake Like Me Reviews

  • Blair

    (4.5) A no-name painter – 'no-name' as in 'not famous', but also literally, as she remains nameless throughout the book – is on the verge of a career breakthrough. She is nearing completion of her series

    a set of large-scale oil paintings loosely based on the

    . Then the loft in which she has been living and working burns down. Her insurance won't be paid out, because she wasn't supposed to be living there; her management still expects the show to be delivered on

    (4.5) A no-name painter – 'no-name' as in 'not famous', but also literally, as she remains nameless throughout the book – is on the verge of a career breakthrough. She is nearing completion of her series

    a set of large-scale oil paintings loosely based on the

    . Then the loft in which she has been living and working burns down. Her insurance won't be paid out, because she wasn't supposed to be living there; her management still expects the show to be delivered on schedule, as she'd claimed the finished works were in secure storage. As she sees it, there's only one way out. She has to recreate the work, via the single item she managed to salvage: a notebook containing meticulous notes on the process used to create each painting.

    In the background of all this, there's another important character: Carey Logan, the narrator's hero. Until she killed herself at the age of 37, Logan, a sculptor and performance artist, was an art industry darling. She was the most famous member of a five-person collective, Pine City; the group went on to establish a residency of the same name in upstate New York. As the narrator secures a place at Pine City and gets to know Logan's collaborators, the parallels between the two women become worryingly clear.

    Every turn of

    is remarkably well handled. There's a sense that the narrator is stepping into Carey Logan's shoes, but she doesn't lose her identity, and her own art never ceases to be important. Her surroundings, from the fashionably ramshackle Pine City to her wealthy friend Max's astonishing modernist home, easily spring to life in the mind's eye. As do her paintings. I had guessed the twist well ahead of its reveal, but I didn't care. I think that's the best way to do a twist, really: it doesn't matter that it's reasonably obvious to the reader, because it's still immensely satisfying to watch everything (finally) click into place for the narrator.

    Smart and authentic and incredibly gripping,

    isn't just a step up from Bourland's debut,

    it's several flights of stairs up. The narrator and her art are utterly believable creations. If you enjoyed

    or

    I urge you to add this to your wishlist. It's a literary art novel laced with enough elements of the psychological thriller to make it feel taut and compulsive – a brilliant concoction.

    Fake Like Me

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  • Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)

    A young un-named painter with potential is poised to make waves in the art community with her collection of seven billboard-size paintings.  When her apartment goes up in flames and decimates the entire collection, she lies to her gallery and says that six have been safely crated and stored; only the final painting she was still working on has been destroyed.  

    The gallery decides it's in their best interest to have her to re-create the final piece, which has already been sold, in total secrecy.

    N

    A young un-named painter with potential is poised to make waves in the art community with her collection of seven billboard-size paintings.  When her apartment goes up in flames and decimates the entire collection, she lies to her gallery and says that six have been safely crated and stored; only the final painting she was still working on has been destroyed.  

    The gallery decides it's in their best interest to have her to re-create the final piece, which has already been sold, in total secrecy.

    Now homeless and without a single piece for her show, she searches frantically for a studio available on short notice where she can re-create all seven pieces in their entirety in just three months.

    The artist is in awe when an acquaintance gets her a spot at the exclusive artist retreat known as Pine City in upstate New York. Pine City isn't just a resort, it's also the name of the collective of five artists who own it.

    Carey Logan was a member of Pine City, and the idol of our main character.  Carey's work was brilliant and her life ended far too soon when she purposefully stepped into a lake and drowned.

    When our no-name artist arrives at Pine City, she finds it's full of secrets. The retreat is shadowed by Carey's presence and yet none of the dead artist's friends will speak about her; she has been removed from every photo on the grounds, and none of the remaining collective will share their work.

    Across the lake is Max, our MC's childhood friend who has been famous most of her life for being wealthy and then earned fame with her photography skills.  Max swears total secrecy when she learns that her friend is re-creating her entire show but soon it appears Max has motives for keeping her secret.

    Carey Logan not only designed the home Max now lives in, but she was represented by Max's husband, Charlie. The MC learns that Charlie's gallery is in a legal battle with Pine City over a rumored final piece of art by Carey Logan.  

    What was the final piece?  Why is Pine City so secretive about their work and the legacy of Carey Logan?

    fits solidly into the women's fiction genre but it also surprised me by being a dark satire as well as a thriller set in the glamorous contemporary art scene.  

    The characters are overwhelmingly pretentious and take themselves far too seriously, but as in all good satires, it was incredibly entertaining. 

    I wasn't expecting the mystery surrounding Carey Logan to be so compelling; I couldn't turn the pages fast enough to uncover the truth.

    Thanks to Grand Central Publishing and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.  

    is scheduled for release on June 18, 2019.

    For more reviews, visit

  • Chelsea Humphrey

    I'll admit, I'm less than knowledgable about anything involving the art scene. I am not cool, hip, or in the know about much these days other than Peppa Pig and Blippi, but it was nice to delve into an "adult" story that did not feature talking pigs or a grown man wearing clothes that appear to fit a toddler. This story is also being touted as a thriller, which I guess it is in some ways, but I would classify this more as a literary thriller, or a dramatic, thought provokin

    I'll admit, I'm less than knowledgable about anything involving the art scene. I am not cool, hip, or in the know about much these days other than Peppa Pig and Blippi, but it was nice to delve into an "adult" story that did not feature talking pigs or a grown man wearing clothes that appear to fit a toddler. This story is also being touted as a thriller, which I guess it is in some ways, but I would classify this more as a literary thriller, or a dramatic, thought provoking crime fiction. That's not a criticism, merely a heads up to those looking for a more classic thriller.

    Where to start? This glitzy, sleek story is told in such a unique format; we do not learn the official name of out narrator, who gives off an unstable vibe from the very beginning, and I honestly found this so fascinating. I was intrigued to know what drove this character, what brought her to the art scene, and how someone could so seamlessly slip into the lifestyle of another person. Like I said, this is really more of a dark character study than a thriller, but there's enough of a vein of suspense that keeps the reader hooked and intrigued throughout. I found that once our nameless girl makes it to the art retreat Pine City, that the pacing really picked up and I found myself fully invested.

    I don't want to say much more, but if you decide to read this one, and want to discuss in greater detail (AKA SPOILERS), we would love to have you join our Goodreads bookclub

    !

    ******************

    Welcome to our June choice for the Suspenseful Clues and Thrilling Reviews Goodreads bookclub! Everyone is invited to join in, and you can find the discussion threads in the 2019 monthly reading tab

    !

  • Bam

    It's 1996 and the unnamed narrator of this story is a fledgling artist from Florida, currently a sophomore at the Academy in NYC, and feeling pretty lonely in the big city. One day she notices a group of five young and beautiful artists who are 'making it' in the art scene. Three of them have graduated from the same art school she's attending and all are becoming well known for their nihilistic and shrewd work, rather all of a type. But it is a young woman of the group named Carey Logan who is t

    It's 1996 and the unnamed narrator of this story is a fledgling artist from Florida, currently a sophomore at the Academy in NYC, and feeling pretty lonely in the big city. One day she notices a group of five young and beautiful artists who are 'making it' in the art scene. Three of them have graduated from the same art school she's attending and all are becoming well known for their nihilistic and shrewd work, rather all of a type. But it is a young woman of the group named Carey Logan who is the hottest of them all with her hyperrealist sculptures of human body parts.

    Oh, how our narrator would love to be just like her and be part of that group now known as Pine City. They form an exclusive artist collective by that name, moving into an old resort in upper New York state, where each has their own studio and other artists are allowed to come by invitation only.

    Fast forward to 2006 and Carey has stopped working in sculpture and taken up performance art. The reviews are not kind and Carey does one last performance in which she commits suicide on film.

    Now three more years have passed and our unnamed artist is making a bit of a splash herself with her billboard-sized paintings when disaster strikes and her loft burns with most of her work inside. She lies to the gallery owner who is selling her work about the extent of her loss and now she must quickly repaint several works for her upcoming show. It's an impossible, super human task and where can she find a studio big enough to hold her work at this late date? One art patron she meets comes to her rescue and says she can get her a spot at Pine City. Wow! Her dream is finally coming true.

    The remaining four Pine City artists are not particularly welcoming at first. And she finds it odd that none of them will talk about Carey at all, even though her work still obviously influences theirs. Is there more going on here than meets the eye?

    I enjoyed the story but I don't think it's going to be everyone's cup of tea. I think you have to be very interested in art and enjoy reading the details of the creative process. The minutia does slow the story done a bit but I think the pace does make sense. It gives the reader an understanding of all the work this artist must go through to recreate her paintings and save her career. Desperate times.

    I had at first marked this as a 'thriller' but it is not. The touch of mystery is very light but rather interesting when you finally learn what's going on at Pine City. I think the story is much more about relationships and how people use other people.

    I received an arc from the publisher via NetGalley for my honest review. Many thanks.

  • Margitte

    You've got to admit that Humpty Dumpty was a piece of art. Well, then you can admit that this poor piece of art committed suicide by falling of the wall. And so it was again in

    , except that this time it wasn't Humpty Dumpty ...

    Franz Kafka said:

    You've got to admit that Humpty Dumpty was a piece of art. Well, then you can admit that this poor piece of art committed suicide by falling of the wall. And so it was again in

    , except that this time it wasn't Humpty Dumpty ...

    Franz Kafka said:

    Was

    one of those books? Nope. Mediocre in its intent to promote radical feminism with all the narrative safely and securely established as the main intent/purpose of the saga. But yes, the idea is a popular trend, actually, a small percentage in the big world out there, and yes, it has its moments. But no, it did not rock my world at all.

    Our anonymous narrator and protagonist lost her paintings and had to suck up to her super rich and influential 'friends'in the art world to save her budding reputation and lucrative income. While receiving their assistance in unimaginable ways, she constantly attacked them for being privileged. That was a kind-of deal-breaker to me. But alas, she persisted and she came up trumps in the end.

    I actually enjoyed the book. An easy read, with a touch of mystery and sleuthing going on. The bouts of word dumping, like a bad cold, got to me from time to time, but was tolerable. I loved the author's way with words. This paragraph gave me the wordy thrills:

    For the wordsmithery a star is added to the rating. I'm in a good mood.

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