Masterclass

Morris L. West, Author
Morris L. West, Author St. Martin's Press $19.95 (330p) ISBN 978-0-312-05895-1
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
Most readers will undoubtedly devour each page of West's thriller, then eagerly press the book on friends. This tale of intrigue and murder set amid the international art world features an engaging hero who is rapidly graduating from novice to accomplished rogue while wrestling with his conscience. Art historian Max Mather is a not-quite-kept man, repaying the attentions lavished on him by an Italian millionairess with scholarship devoted to her family archives. Upon her untimely death, the partroness leaves Max his choice of a memento to be selected from the family holdings, whereupon he picks a wrapped package containing what may be Raphael drawings that would be valued well beyond what she, and certainly the other heirs, intended. To avoid a legal battle and establish proper provenance, he masks his ownership and sets up an elaborate scam to have the work ``discovered.'' Involving his ex-lover, gallery owner Anne-Marie Loredon, in this effort, he becomes enmeshed in the tangled web surrounding the recent brutal murder of a promising artist. The two stories eventually intertwine in a fast-paced modern morality tale. Masterclass is a world-class thriller. 100,000 first printing; $100,000 ad/promo. (May)
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