Gallery Pieces: An Art Mystery

Rated 4.50/5 based on 20 reviews
Former Navy intelligence man Julian Peale enters the art world for the love of painting, but finds its underbelly of crime just as fascinating—and decidedly dangerous. A fast-paced mystery that will keep readers guessing until the end. More

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About Larry Witham

Larry Witham is an author, editor, journalist, and artist. He has written fifteen books, and was a finalist in the 2015 Pen Literary Awards for biography. Witham lives with his wife in the Maryland suburbs of Washington D.C. This is his third novel.

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Reviews

Review by: Kaylee Stevens on Feb. 08, 2016 :
At first I admit I wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into in deciding to read this book. Because admittedly I do tend to lean towards the paranormal/fantasy elements of literature because I enjoy the make-believe parts. And a book about art? Russian gangsters? Not my usual fare. But I was intrigued by the writing sample and the way that I felt an almost immediate connection to not only the characters (especially Peale and Medici), but with the way that Larry Witham was writing them, and I found myself just wanting to read more… and more… and more… and I couldn’t believe it when I’d finished the whole thing in a few nights flat! But seriously, I felt transported to another world just by experiencing the lives of these incredible characters who are so true to life and authentic, yet unlike any I’ve met before. Really glad I took a chance on this one…
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Jenna Brewster on Feb. 08, 2016 :
I’m a huge fan of suspense/mystery/adventure thrillers and read them all the time. Unfortunately, after a while many of them start to feel the same, like many authors (especially new ones) are using the same recycled plot over and over again. But I like trying out new authors and thought the premise of Larry Witham’s sounded interesting—and quite ambitious. But while I fully admit I didn’t have the highest expectations going in…well, consider me blown away! I read “Gallery Pieces” almost in one sitting (much to my own amazement) Larry Witham is a hugely is a talented writer, and I was hooked in by the way he weaved so many interesting characters and high-octane storylines together to create a wholly addicting story that I couldn’t put down until the final conclusion. It was fast-paced and with snappy dialogue and stands out from the crowd. Will be checking out Mr. Witham’s other works soon. Recommend.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Claire Middleton on Feb. 08, 2016 :
Loved this book! Totally different from what I normally read, but superb writing and an unpredictable plot that keeps you guessing totally won me over! When I started reading this book, “Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham, I just didn't want to stop until I’d read the whole thing. There are so many great characters (good and bad) and the suspense throughout the book just keeps building and building and kept me wanting to read more……. Kept me totally hooked the whole way. Really liked the art element and the dialogue was authentic and the narrative tight. Peale makes for interesting MC, and I was surprised and happy with how it all wrapped up – lots of unexpected layers to be uncovered. Recommend the book to those that enjoy a good mystery that is intelligent and unpredictable. Great writing, and will be sure to look for more from Larry Witham in the future.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Stacy Decker on Feb. 08, 2016 :
(4.5 stars)
This book was terrific! Once I started reading, “Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham, I didn’t want to stop until I’d finished the whole thing. It pulls you in from the beginning, and I enjoyed the author’s “voice” and style of writing. The interweaving plotlines were well-crafted and not predictable, surprising considering it had some familiar tropes and I was bracing myself for it to be cliché. However, I thought Mr. Witham did a wonderful job of making the story wholly his own, while keeping true to the essence of the characters and their roles. There was just enough mystery to keep me guessing, and I appreciated the philosophical, almost existential approach that gave this book an unexpected depth and intelligence I wasn’t necessarily expecting. Was satisfied with the ending, although I’m hoping there might be more. Recommend for fans of suspense/ mystery, and well-written lit-fiction.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Anabella Johnson on Feb. 08, 2016 :
I loved this book and read the whole thing in one week, which is fast for me, especially because I have no free time to read these days. But it just seemed to go by so fast and I never wanted to stop reading it, even late into the evening. I was mesmerized by the intriguing world Witham creates, one so realistic and authentic, yet something a small town Kansas gal like myself doesn’t necessarily experience- felt like I just travelled all over the world! Loved the art element and the personal detailing that added the flavor and authenticity needed to really bring the characters and story to life. Too much happens in this book to cover properly in a short review so you really just have to read it for yourself… you will not be disappointed!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: MegKing on Feb. 08, 2016 :
How to describe this book, other than say it is by far one of the most addicting novels I’ve read in a long time! I have already loaned it to my mother to read, and my sister is right after her(it is right up their alley!) The author Larry Witham pulls us in to the story right from the beginning pages, and skillfully narrates a wide-ranging storyline full of complex and intriguing issues. In my opinion it really is the characters who made this story so good, each so original and conflicted in their own way, and we pull for them throughout their personal journeys as we get to know them and their stories. A memorable read and a keeper for sure. Would love to read more from Larry Witham in the future!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: ElizaB9988 on Feb. 08, 2016 :
3.5 stars
When I read books, usually I either like the dialogue, and the narrative seems flat (or too telling and long-winded) or the prose is good, but the conversations seem contrived and fake, or the pacing is uneven and stilted – fast and slow. But I loved how well everything flowed in “Gallery Pieces” with the balance between them all made it feel authentic and well- paced, like we are watching a movie or something. It had it all, seriously…love, war, secrets, family life, good guys, bad guys, … takes us on an unforgettable, and ultimately fulfilling rollercoaster ride that I won’t soon forget.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: CodyB77 on Feb. 02, 2016 :
warning…when starting this book make sure you don’t have anywhere you need to be or anything you need to do because you won’t want to stop reading until you’ve finished it all!! Trust me on this! The book starts off with us getting introduced to the characters and learning their backgrounds and setting up the scene for “The Russian Sting” at Medici’s art gallery and just keeps going with one twist after another. The characters of Julian Peale, Leo Medici, Pricilla, and Joe Castelli were fantastic, genuine and believable with great chemistry which was amazing considering the unique circumstances of the story setup. I admit I went into this pretty blind, only scanning the description, but being a fan of art and mysteries, I thought this to be a literary treat too good to pass up, and I was right! I was genuinely impressed with the strong narrative and prose the author Larry Witham demonstrates, and thought it all flowed very well. Great dialogue and editing. Looking forward to reading more from Mr. Witham.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: TabithaParks on Feb. 02, 2016 :
"Gallery Pieces” is an excellent novel that captured my attention from the beginning, pulled me in, and never once let go. Each scene was riveting, imaginative, and flowed smoothly from one to the next… never a “dull part” where you get bored or want to skip ahead… in fact almost the opposite with the various interweaving plotlines and going from one character and event to the next. The descriptions were very strong, and I mean with Larry Witham’s word choice… unique and powerful. I felt like I was genuinely inside the characters’ heads experiencing the world through their eyes, for better or worse. I would love to read more from this author in the future. He has a natural gift for creating a well-thought out story and developing deeply memorable characters.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Brenda Maxwell on Feb. 02, 2016 :
I’ll admit that “Gallery Pieces” wouldn’t be my normal type of read (I’m more of a fantasy and romance gal) but I’ve been wanting to read more out of my comfort zone lately and expand my tastes… the premise and sample looked intriguing so I thought I’d give it a chance. I’d so glad I did! It was far more exciting than I would’ve guessed, and I found myself flipping the pages as fast as I could to see what would happen. I liked how everything came full circle at the end, and how the story was set amongst a backdrop that is unfamiliar to me and I feel like it opened my eyes a lot. I like art as much as the next person, but I’m no expert and I will never look at it the same way again! It broadened my perspectives - That was cool. This was a fast read with lots of exciting twists and turns, and I think that Larry made an art crime-novel fan out of me!
4.5 stars
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: LauraClarke on Feb. 02, 2016 :
4.5 stars
this was the first book I’ve read by this author Larry Witham, but I certainly hope it’s not the last. He has a gift for writing descriptive and life-like scenes that make us feel like we are really there inside the story, as opposed to it all just being “told” to us, as so many rookie authors make the mistake of doing. I like that this book didn’t feel stale or derivative, but instead like a new niche of suspense that serves well to help diversify a somewhat formulaic genre (in my opinion). Great editing, but started off a bit slow, and there was a lack of tension at times where I though could be more – things were just sort of glossed over on occasion, but overall the entire novel was one that I thought was nicely developed and delivered a wild ride of unexpected twists and turns. I like the darker element, and there were some pretty surprising scenes as well, but I wasn’t sure about the ending – I think I liked it… Best suited for fans of thriller/suspense who’d like a new twist.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Nicole Hastings on Feb. 02, 2016 :
the whole time I was reading “Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham, I felt like I could have been watching it as a movie on the big screen. This novel was just as good as—if not better—many of the big-budget movies we’ve seen in this genre. The writing was clear and descriptive, with an ever-present tension of high stakes in the glamourous and dangerous world of hi class art crimes. I liked that the characters seemed “real” (not the stereotypical cardboard cutouts we see so much of in these types of books),and the dialogue felt authentic enough for the most part. But I have to say there were times where I thought I needed to be taking notes because there was so much going on and in different places and with so many characters. It almost made me dizzy, but in a good way. I definitely enjoyed reading this and think almost anyone will find something about it they like. I’d recommend this to my friends and family with no reservations. The ending makes it seem like there might be more… I hope so!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: CamJones on Feb. 02, 2016 :
"Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham grabbed me from the opening pages and didn’t let go until the very end. It is rare to find a book that keeps my attention all the way through, but this one did. I was totally caught up in the whirlwind of events, and loved the behind the scenes action of the underground art crime world. Nothing lights my fire more than deception and unpredictable twists…and “Gallery Pieces” did not disappoint! If I had only one minor problem was that it was a tad hard to follow at some parts because it almost seemed too fast paced, lots of dialog and I wasn’t sure who was talking when and I got a bit confused because there are a lot of characters. Peale and Castelli and Medici are the main ones, and I really enjoyed them. But it was well edited and I literally could not put down my Kindle during the last 30% or so. Recommend to fans of the adventure/thriller genre…heck, for anyone who just enjoys a great, intelligently-written, thought provoking read!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Cory Banyan on Feb. 02, 2016 :
"Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham is one of the most creative and best-written novels I’ve read in a long time! I was completely drawn in from the get-go with the atmospheric opening that grounds us in the ‘artistic’ viewpoint right away…and absolutely loved the author’s use of description of the different settings, and his attention to detailing in the characterizations and the world-building. I’ve never read any “art mystery’ books before but am familiar with the concept and I enjoyed how complex and totally addicting it was!!Leo Medici and Julian Peale are great, dynamic characters, (as is the rest of the supporting cast) and it really caught me by surprise how much I enjoyed all of it, and it was much deeper and more philosophically ‘complex’ than I’d expected it to be. Excellent editing and formatting – very professionally presented all around. I will love to read more if there will be any! Recommend to fans of adventure and suspense.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: LaylaM1 on Jan. 30, 2016 :
wow, what a crazy book! I’m not one for rehashing the plot (that’s what the summary is for on the book description page), but trust me when I say you’ve never read anything like this before! I was really intrigued by the idea of a mystery set in the glamourous world of priceless and ancient art, and was not disappointed in the least as this book covers that and so, so much more! I completely hooked from the beginning and my attention never wavered one bit. I was impressed not only with the execution, but the writing itself, and Mr. Witham’s use of word choice. Vivid, atmospheric, and completely believable. If you like mystery fiction, suspense, or drama, you’ll definitely enjoy this one. It’s a fast, but entertaining read that will take you through new concepts and perspectives that you’ve never thought of before. By far one the better books I’ve come across lately! Recommend.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Steph Coleman on Jan. 29, 2016 :
wow, I LOVED this book, way more than I even expected to! I was looking for something a little out of my usual fare with reading, and this really hit the mark, in fact, now other books will seem boring by comparison! I like that it felt very plausible and ‘true to life’ on the sense that this is probably stuff that happens in real life, yet is presented in a way that is ‘entertaining’ (for lack of a better word!) and is exciting. I literally could not put my kindle down for the last half of the book, at least. I’ve never read any sort of ‘art crimes’ book before, (although I loved “The Thomas Crowne Affair) and not only was this a fascinating mystery and a riveting read, I think it helped me to appreciate and understand certain elements of crime and the art world that I’ve never really thought about before, so I liked that a lot. This was a fast paced, well written and professionally edited book and I highly recommend it to others.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: SherriWarner on Jan. 26, 2016 :
"Gallery Pieces” By Larry Witham was awesome! I haven’t read anything like that in a long time, if ever. For once it seemed like the characters were anything but the stock, ordinary typical hero/protag guys… instead had secrets, motivations, flawed backstory…Even cooler were all the bad guys who came along to spice things up, and there was great character development throughout, especially with Peale and Priscilla. I thought Mr. Witham’s narrative style was just wonderful… very powerful word choices and almost literary at times with the beautiful prose and descriptions and complex multi- layered storylines… All came together to create a fresh-feeling novel that was out of the ordinary and kept me hooked throughout.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: DarleneCupp on Jan. 26, 2016 :
First, I love me some mysteries and am a HUGE art fan, so I jumped on this book. I went in with high expectations even though I’d never read the author before, and I was not in the least bit disappointed. This was a brilliant novel and I loved it! I love how the author put such a creative and intelligent spin on some familiar tropes and put a fresh spin on them. It wasn’t predictable which is great – hate when I figure out the twist halfway through the book! There are many subplots that all come together, but I almost wondered if the story (or the characters) were going to continue on into more as it seems like they could… But even if not this was a satisfying read that kept me interested the whole way through. Great job!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: GillianHancock on Jan. 20, 2016 :
I knew by the 25% mark that I would really love “Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham and it would go on my “favorites” shelf, and I was right! I admit I had no real expectations when starting it, seeing as how I’d never read the author before, but I was intrigued by the description. And I was not in the least bit disappointed! I was so impressed with the writing and Witham’s level of creative detailing on almost every single aspect of the various subplots, and with the depth of the character development. The plotlines are completely original, intelligent and complex, and were not predictable of cliché which was a relief. The narrative is done well, and I was impressed with the near-flawless editing – something that is really rare in ebooks. Very descriptive and crazy action, especially towards the end… literally could not stop reading. The ending gives emotional satisfaction and is rewarding. Overall a memorable, well written book that takes chances in a new and creative way. Really enjoyed it!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: NicolaFlood on Jan. 19, 2016 :
Lately I’ve been in a rut of putting down books and not picking them up again because I lost interest at one point and just never continued. This was definitely not the case with this book, “Gallery Pieces” by Larry Witham. From the very beginning the intrigue and action flowed seamlessly from one page to the next, and was unpredictable enough to make me just *have* to see what would happen next. Not formulaic or cookie-cutter at all, even though there are plenty of “familiar elements” necessary for a mystery/ action thriller. I was impressed with Witham’s writing style and will look for more works from him in the future. Happy to see he has quite the backlist!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

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