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Theft by Peter Carey
Theft is narrated by the Boone brothers: Michael (also called Butcher Bones), a painter down on his luck who's lost his artwork to his ex-wife, and Hugh (Slow Bones), a large man with brain damage and a tendency for violence. The two of them live in the country house of one of Hugh's patrons, although they tend to either damage or sell the patrons' belongings. Despite his own reluctance, Hugh starts painting again, perhaps finally creating his masterpiece. This is all interrupted by a chance encounter with Marlene Leibovitz, the daughter-in-law of a famous painter with her own shady background. She charms both men, and Hugh finds himself falling in love with her, even as he doesn't trust her. She draws him back into the art world, involving him in a plan to steal one of her father-in-law's paintings. It's a world where truth and honesty often take a beating, and much isn't what it appears to be. Peter Carey explores his usual themes of the fine line between truth and fiction and Theft has received mostly positive reviews with the Cleveland Plain Dealer saying, "It's not just the story, which is a roller coaster, or the characters, each of whom is so memorable, but the sheer physicality of Carey's writing that makes Theft so good. Read it. You won't be disappointed."