Augusta and Owen have taken the leap. Leaving the city and its troubling memories behind, they have moved to the country for a solitary life where they can devote their days to each other and their art, where Au ...more
This is one of those novels that provide great suspense and engages the reader's curiosity from the beginning, but it's not so much about guessing the outcome as it is about how the story and how the characters develop.
I realize that there's a tendency to use lots of hyperbole when describing books ...more
This is Gus's story, a story chronicling the long term relationship and eventual marriage of her and Owen. He is a writer suffering from writer's b ...more
As with all contemplative fiction, the plot is simply a vehicle for exploring human folly and the commonalities we share as fla ...more
READ *Jan Ellison's* review'.... She wrote completely how I feel!!!!
In case you are lazy...
*Jan Ellison* says, "What a brilliant, beautiful, heartbreaking novel. It does what only the best books do--remind us that there is no experience as exquisite, as immersive, as transformative, as being lost in a fiction that contains so much truth about love and life." [WOW!--thank you for that Jan]
Here a few places where I paused to reflect on memories from my own life ... (there a ...more
But this book is special. The premise is fairly simple - Augusta and Owen are a lifelong free-spirited artist couple (she a painter, he a writer) that only gave in to the institution of marriage after they were almost torn apart by the betrayal of one of them, and have moved out to a secluded country house to rebuild their r ...more
This is the story of Augusta and Owen who have retreated into the country to pursue their artistic ambitions but whose life together is turned upside down by the arrival of a new neighbour. Problem number one: I was never convinced either of them had any artistic talent. Owen is such a dull feckless man whose dialogue is so wooden and banal that it was impossible to imagine him as an underappreciated cult writer. Augusta too comes across as a dilettante artist. You have the feeling both are bury ...more
Slow to begin with and yet interesting enough to get my attention, this is one of those books that requires patience as its not full of drama or twists and turns and yet the atmosphere and the emotion of this story really had a huge impact on me. There was times I felt I was a fly on the wall in Gus and Owens home and while the characters are flawed and not part ...more
Early into Life Drawing I thought, "I just don't read a lot of marriage plot books. I don't really like the domestic story." Then I took a glance through my past reads. Hah. Madame Bovary. Anna Karenina. The Portrait of a Lady. Jane Eyre. Rebecca. Little Women. The Scarlet Letter. Crossing to Safety. The Color Purple. A Death in the Family. The Grapes of Wrath. Brick Lane. The Corrections. Gone Girl. The Interestings. ...more
Painter Gus (Augusta) and writer Owen are married and live in an isolated farmhouse in the country, in a state of self-exile as they clumsily work to recover an affair Gus had two years ago. Adding to the strain is the fact that Gus is “in the zone” creatively and Owen is struggling with a massive case of writer’s block. A British woman, Alison, moves into an adjoining property and Alison and Gus become friends, ...more
So few novels really nail mature middle-ag ...more
Joyce said ...
It's simple, but complicated. It's a mixture of feelings, love, betrayal, honesty, lies, what's said and what's not said, it's light, it's heavy. It's the universe of a marriage -- a Life Drawing. And it's a very good book.
Next, in steps the beautiful new neighbor Alison with an abusive x-husband and her Amazon-Like gorgeous, but meddling daughter Nora who causes disastrous complications that lead to the uncovering of more betrayals.....(view spoiler)[a brutal act of violence (hide s...more
Robin Black's Life Drawing definitel ...more
Beautifully written - lovely, spare prose in a book that almost reads itself, Life Drawing takes on a well-worn topic and unfortunately brings nothing new, interesting or insightful to it. Ultimately disjointed and more than a bit implausible, it peters out, ending with an event some have called startling and devastating; but the method is too silly and contrived to have any real bite. Classic deus ex machina.
Life Drawing has been marketed as a ...more
These sentences are spoken by the narrator, forty-seven year-old Augusta “Gus” Edelman, who is an artist. She and her husband, Owen, live out in rural Pennsylvania, in a rambling old 1918 farmhouse that they bought and renovated three years ago, leaving their social life in Philly behind for a bucolic setting that would also stir the creative juices. From the opening, we learn that Gus had an affair in 2005, ...more
Two and a half stars.
Where to start with this novel which came to me from Scribe publications? I wanted to like it and read it fairly quickly. To begin with I was happy enough reading, even though I didn’t like Gus (Augusta) who is a painter or her husband Owen, who is a writer struggling to overcome writer's block. It is a novel about choices and consequences. That and the beautiful prose kept me reading. It deals with them ...more
This one was slow to build but the ending was well worth the wait. It's cynical and depressing, but an excellent reminder of how the "small" selfish things we do that hurt the ones we love can result in consequences more far-reaching than ever expected.
Favorite Quote: Life. It begins and begins and begins. An infinite number of times. It is all beginnings until the end comes. Sometimes we know it and sometimes we do not, b ...more
What a brilliant, beautiful, heartbreaking novel. It does what only the best books do--reminds us that there is no experience as exquisite, as immersive, as transformative, as being ...more
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