A Novel

Book - 2016
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By day, Judith Rashleigh is a put-upon assistant at a prestigious London art house. By night, she's a hostess at one of the capital's notorious champagne bars. Desperate to make something of herself, Judith knows she has to play the game. She's transformed her accent and taught herself about wine and the correct use of a dessert fork, not to mention the art of discretion. She's learned to be a good girl. But when Judith is fired for uncovering a dark secret at the heart of the art world--and her honest efforts at a better life are destroyed--she turns to a long-neglected friend. A friend who kept her chin up and back straight through every slight: Rage.
Publisher: New York :, G.P. Putnam's Sons,, [2016]
ISBN: 9780399184260
Characteristics: 309 pages ; 24 cm


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Oct 13, 2018

Maestra is a delightful bit of escapist fantasy. Yes it is over the top and a bit ridiculous, but if you suspend your disbelief and just accept the story, you'll have a pretty good time reading it. It's a fast read, well edited to move quickly and compellingly.

CRRL_MegRaymond Dec 19, 2017

Judith Rashleigh has overcome her working class upbringing to become an educated art historian. But she still doesn’t feel accepted, and starts making bad choices to “get ahead”.

Sep 27, 2016

great mystery - unexpected

BostonPL_LauraB Jul 11, 2016

Needed to read this book for a book club, but after seeing the ratings on goodreads, I went in with very low expectations and because of that I think I was able to get through it quite quickly and ignore (for the most part) the implausible plot and REALLY unlikable (but not even redeemable) main character, Judith.

May 27, 2016

A deliciously suspenseful, noirish story about Judith, a lowly assistant employed by an upscale London art dealer.

Judith really loves her art, but because she does not come from money, she inhabits “the white time, the negative space, the gap between desire and lack.” And so we root for her as she battles the snobs and users of the art world. She channels Artemisia Gentileschi. You go girl!

Gradually, though, as we see her cut loose in the metro club scene, we start to think, whoa. “Who is this woman?” Whoa. And more whoa, through the final pages.

The vicarious perks of Maestra include many references to European architecture, works of art, restaurants large and small, trendy food and drink, mega yachts and designer labels. Linguaphiles (especially of French and Italian) will find little gems throughout.

But Hilton clearly enjoys showing the “rasher” side of Rashleigh’s outre sex life, meaning that the reading experience is like alternately flipping through Architectural Digest and Cosmo.

multcolib_karene Apr 25, 2016

This is quite an entertaining book though it does require one to suspend one's disbelief as the story goes on. And I had to completely suspend all of my feminist ideals while reading it. Oh, and there's sex--quite a bit of it.

JCLGreggW Feb 17, 2016

This is dark and juicy psychological thriller about a young woman who toils in the depths of the London art auction house scene who dreams of climbing the ladder to a glamorous world of money and power. Judith Rashleigh is smart, beautiful, and educated, but lacks the connections to make a name for herself. She uses sex, wit, and daring, seizing opportunities and risking everything to pull off a perfect scheme. Complex, sizzling, and a ton of fun. (I'm betting you'll see this one on many a beach bag this summer.)

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