Murder is a fine art…
A killer is preying on New York's art community, creating gruesome depictions of famous paintings, using human flesh and blood as his media. Terror stalks this world of genius, greed, inspiration, and jealousy -- a world Kate McKinnon knows all too well. A former NYPD cop who traded in her badge for a Ph.D in art history, Kate can see the method behind the psychopath's madness -- for the grisly slaughter of a former protégé is drawing her into the predator's path. And as each new murder exceeds the last in savagery, Kate is trapped in the twisted obsessions of the death artist, who plans to use her body, her blood, and her fear to create the ultimate masterpiece.
Painter Santlofer turns his artist's eye to murder in an alternately brutal and dishy debut whodunit about a New York cop turned art historian tracking down a serial killer who mutilates his victims to make them look like famous paintings. While many in the ostentatiously elegant cast of self-serving artists, curators, patrons and patronesses hide ugly secrets, only one takes the idea of the tortured artist to the extreme. His first victim, a museum board president with a taste for sadomasochism, is found in his bathtub, arm draped over the side in the same pose as David's Marat. Inspired by both traditional and modern art and sensitive to color, line and light, the "death artist" next slashes the face of a female victim to match a Picasso portrait. It's enough to horrify but not to deter ex-homicide detective Kate McKinnon Rothstein, now a wealthy, beautiful hostess of her own PBS series. She puts her talents and her marriage to the test to pursue a criminal who seems to crave her appreciation for his handiwork. The exploration of the psychology of the death artist, along with gossipy insights into the politics of art, make this book a bloody funfest for the museum and gallery crowd, never mind that as Kate investigates sexual liaisons that cross social and moral boundaries, she uncovers an array of suspense novel clich s. When Santlofer, a Pratt graduate, NEA grant recipient and Yaddo board member, airs his insider views, his observations of art and the art world lift this enthusiastic if not totally original mystery to the ranks of a high-class art opening. should rouse art-world interest in Santlofer's debut. Foreign rights sold in France and Japan.