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The story is based in the art world of Europe. The most popular art is hyperdramatism, where people are the canvas. The canvases are painted daily and hold their positions, without moving, every day for 10 hours in museums or private collections. There is large demand to be canvases especially for the masters such as Bruno van Tysch and people go on training courses, take drugs to stop bodily functions and practise holding positions for the honour to become a masterpiece worth millions of dollars.
However there is a dark side to the hyperdramatic movement, with the illegal creation of ornaments where canvases are turned into everyday objects e.g. lamps, chairs, the kidnapping of children to be used as canvases and in this book the murder of some of Bruno van Tyschâ€™s finest pieces.
Although this is a murder mystery book I didnâ€™t think of it in that way. I was so absorbed in how well the hyperdramatic movement was explained and developed through the book (I could actually believe it really existed) that I very rarely thought about who the murder could be. The debate on morality throughout the book was also fascinating; is hyperdramatism cruel even though people want to be canvases, and were the victims murdered people or destroyed pieces of art.
I really enjoyed this book as the ideas were so original and I would recommend it to others to read although Iâ€™m not sure I would read it a second time. I didnâ€™t realise it was a translation till I was near the end of the book, so I think the translator did a fantastic job as the story flows brilliantly.
Bookcrossing journal – controlled release