Anna's Reviews > The Very Picture of You

The Very Picture of You by Isabel Wolff
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's review
May 26, 2012

really liked it
Read from May 19 to 26, 2012

I won this as a goodreads give-away and admit I did not pick it up right away, maybe because the cover of the uncorrected proof is so bland, I'm not sure. But the old adage stands, don't judge a book by it's cover, because I throughly enjoyed this book. I found compelled to keep reading as i wanted to know the stories of Ella, her family and those of whom she painted their portraits. Sitting for a portrait is such an intimate relationship in which Ella was able to examine the souls of those she painted. In a complex weaving connection of characters the story unfolds of Ella's childhood heartbreak of her father, John, abandoning her as a child and the lies her mother, Sue, told her about her and John. Ella has a good relationship with Roy, her adopted father, and her sister Chloe, yet has struggled with why her biological father left her so suddenly and completely. There are secrets hidden in those she paints, one of them being that she had fallen in love with her sister Chloe's fiance, Nate. Ella is torn up over her feelings for Nate and refuses to acknowledge them for fear of hurting her sister who had recently recovered from a broken relationship with a married man. In Mike there is a man heartbroken over the loss of his mistress. In Iris there's a tragic story of a broken relationship with her father, in many ways a mirror of Ella's childhood. In Celine there is a woman dreading turning forty, restless and feeling she has never truly lived her life. In everyone there is much that is hidden behind the faces shown to the world.

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