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Lifelike Kindle Edition
Jewel's artistic talent is like magic, as if her brush were a witch's wand, not a simple painting tool. She thinks she could surpass the old masters, if she could only escape her parents' plastic existence. When she's finally out of high school, she flees to San Francisco and a fresh start.
What she doesn't know is that her talent is fueled by an untamed and dangerous magic which makes her an unwilling threat to the people she loves. When a mysterious, alluring art teacher promises to train her to control and harness that magic, Jewel puts her future--and her body--into his seductive hands. She soon discovers she's not his first pupil, however, and as she learns the truth from the girls who came before, Jewel is faced with a terrible choice: Give up painting and spend her life running away, or risk her life--and her very soul--to destroy the man she's fallen in love with.
PLEASE NOTE: Your purchase will help provide mental health services to people in need because I am donating my summer book sale proceeds to WriteCause, a group of charities focused on providing services, raising awareness, and advocating for mental health. For more information or to make an additional donation, please visit
About the Author
- ASIN : B071421YB6
- Publication date : May 16, 2017
- Language : English
- File size : 1966 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 220 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,466,074 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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For teachers, this would be a great addition to a senior high school literary unit that might include The Catcher In the Rye, The Great Gatsby, or A Doll's House.
Relevant themes include:
-Fitting in / claiming identity
-Trust and betrayal
The book is about artistic Jewel who “flees to San Francisco and a fresh start.” She meets some eccentric characters plus a mysterious, alluring, and dangerous art teacher. When Jewel is invited to his home for lessons, she is shocked by his magic, and the action she takes to reveal his secrets is life-threatening. Dudley created well-developed characters, even the minor ones are intriguing, and the plot keeps the reader guessing.
I normally don't choose this genre, but in reading and appreciating Lifelike, I might explore it more often.
It was hard to relate to an 18 year old worried about drinking wine in a private home since she was underage, but having no problem with moving in with a man old enough and controlling enough to be her father, a man she describes as an a...hole and took great pains to get away from. Her self-appointed guardian angel seemed unnaturally cloying.
Ignore the peculiar cover which in thumbnail looks like the protagonist has something sticking out of her head. It's part of a picture frame surrounding a painting of a woman. Such paintings of beautiful women throughout history are integral to the story.
Grab the kindle version while it's still a bargain.
"Lifelike" is the fourth novel by Dudley that I've read. When I read an early version of it, I had to stop because of the creep factor. I say this with highest regard. It's difficult to create a villain. The tension that Dudley wrought was done with an expert hand. And because I have little tolerance for spooky, creepy, mysterious, I couldn't finish reading that early draft.
Upon its publication, I purchased a Kindle copy, poured a glass of wine, and prepared to get a third or so of the way through. Two hours later, I was finished, slightly breathless and very impressed. (I need to say: there are sex scenes. They're tasteful, written with a light hand, but I wouldn't recommend this novel to someone under the age of, say, sixteen.)
The protagonist, Jewel, is an eighteen-year-old Texas girl who escapes to San Francisco when she discovers her other-worldly powers. There, she meets a lovely variety of neighbors, friends - and an unlikely patron and mentor in wealthy, sophisticated Damon. Damon has many secrets but Jewel's power eclipses even his darkest ones. As she stumbles closer and closer to his real identity, Jewel's life - and soul - are in danger of being lost in his world of art and intrigue.
And, indeed - the most ardent love song in this book is to art itself. From the minute differences of one shade of oil paint to another, from the idea of capturing a person's essence in a portrait, to the loving depiction of the de Young museum, Dudley salutes the beauty and intricacies of creating visual art. He does so with limited exposition and description, using words to crisply and precisely - well, paint - the scenes and images of his setting.
For me, this limited exposition is key. The reason I call this a beach novel is that it moves so quickly. Whereas a work like Maggie Stiefvater's "The Raven Boys" involves quite a lot of philosophical narration, "Lifelike" is streamlined and paced to be enjoyable.
I told you I would be honest. There are some incongruities. Jewel doesn't recognize a reference to the Love Boat, but when she sees Captain's red hoodie with a hammer and sickle on it, she wonders if he is a Communist. Likewise, she worries about drinking wine since she's underage, but she moves to Damon's house without much of a second thought. Also, I'm not sure that Dudley knows the difference between a macaroon and a macaron, but now I'm getting really picky.
I encourage you to buy this magical story and enjoy its whimsical, chilling spell.