Synopses & Reviews
When Alizée Benoit, an American painter working for the Works Progress Administration (WPA), vanishes in New York City in 1940, no one knows what happened to her. Not her Jewish family living in German-occupied France. Not her artistic patron and political compatriot, Eleanor Roosevelt. Not her close-knit group of friends, including Mark Rothko, Jackson Pollock, and Lee Krasner. And, some seventy years later, not her great-niece, Danielle Abrams, who while working at Christie’s auction house uncovers enigmatic paintings hidden behind works by those now-famous Abstract Expressionist artists. Do they hold answers to the questions surrounding her missing aunt?
"Shapiro’s writing pulses with energy….The Muralist brings the time period and setting to life. Readers will appreciate Shapiro’s seamless integration of fact into the story and will feel immersed in a time when the world tipped into chaos. Art, history, and mystery — an intriguing and satisfying blend." Washington Independent Review of Books
"B.A. Shapiro captivated us in 2012 with her "addictive" novel The Art Forger. Now, she’s back with another thrilling tale from the art world, set right on the brink of World War II." Entertainment Weekly
"B. A. Shapiro makes the radical, varied, and sometimes enigmatic world of abstract expressionism altogether human and accessible in her smart new historical thriller. …It has more emotional ballast and is more skillfully written than what one customarily finds. The novel evokes the horror and sorrow of the Holocaust in just their tedious administrative tasks of retracing steps, of sifting through wreckage. Shapiro also does a wonderful job of restoring complexity to the historical moment and stripping away the clarity of retrospection." The Boston Globe
"Shapiro’s plotting is deft, and the anonymous paintings and Alizée’s disappearance add mystery and intrigue to the tale. Like her well-received 2012 novel, The Art Forger, this new story takes us into the heart of what it means to be an artist…vibrant and suspenseful. As tens of thousands of modern-day asylum-seekers from the Middle East and Africa surge into Europe, and pictures of their mistreatment are broadcast around the world, The Muralist is a grim reminder that history continues to repeat itself." Washington Post
About the Author
B.A. Shapiro is the New York Times bestselling author of The Art Forger, The Safe Room, Blind Spot, See No Evil, Blameless and Shattered Echoes. She has also written four screenplays and the non-fiction book, The Big Squeeze. The Art Forger has been on many bestseller lists (New York Times, Boston Globe, LA Times, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Amazon, Kindle) and won many awards including the 2013 New England Book Award for Fiction.
In her previous career incarnations, Shapiro directed research projects for a residential substance abuse facility, worked as a systems analyst/statistician, headed the Boston office of a software development firm, and served as an adjunct professor teaching sociology at Tufts University and creative writing at Northeastern University. She lives in Boston with husband and dog, Sagan.