My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - 2 days
Pages - 368
Publisher - Riverrun
Source - Review Copy
Blurb from Goodreads
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 the seven billboard-size paintings for her next show, a young, no-name painter is left with an impossible task: recreate her art in three months-or ruin her fledgling career.
Homeless and desperate, she flees to an exclusive retreat in upstate New York famous for its outrageous revelries and glamorous artists. And notorious as the place where brilliant young artist Carey Logan-one of her idols-drowned in the lake.
But when she arrives, the retreat is a ghost of its former self. No one shares their work. No parties light up the deck. No one speaks of Carey, though her death haunts the cabins and the black lake, lurking beneath the surface like a shipwreck. As the young painter works obsessively in Carey's former studio, uncovers strange secrets and starts to fall--hard and fast--for Carey's mysterious boyfriend, it's as if she's taking her place.
But one thought shadows her every move: What really happened to Carey Logan?
Our main character and story teller has no name, like she is nameless through the whole story. She is an artist and about to hit the big time when an untimely fire wipes out the artwork she needs to hand in in a few months. Her idol Carey Logan inspired her since she seen her years back. Carey is now dead by suicide and chance happens she gets to go to the retreat Carey and fellow artists create some of their master pieces in. Finding herself in Carey's actual creative space our main character attempts to pull off the recreation of her works whilst trying to find out about Carey and what really happened.
So art isn't my thing but I did find it quite interesting reading the various methods our main character uses to create her master pieces. There is a lot of coverage on the creative artistic side to the book and I think for arty folk this will be interested but as a non arty person I did enjoy learning about something so different. The book is a slow burner in that respect, it is all about the artist, her struggles, work, ideas. Trying to infiltrate the group of artists at the retreat who aren't happy about her arrival. We also see her old "friend" I use that term loosely as the more you read the more shallow she seems and their friendship hallow.
Art, sex, friendship, creativity, betrayal and secrets and just some of the themes in the book although the massive focus was on the artist side. It was different, interesting and managed to surprise me once or twice along the way. Not a book I would normally pick up but I did find it interesting and would read this author again, 3.5/5 for me.