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One for the geezersPictures of You by Matt Thorne PhoenixThorne writes what are reportedly called geezer-pleasers These are books for boys about boys and girls with lots of schoolboyish humour about sex Thorne is the author of three previous novels all dealing with twentysomethings and their urban lives shopping moaning watching TV having sex Pictures of You takes place over 13 days in the course of which bad-boy magazine editor Martin Powell loses his job his assistant Alison grows disgruntled with her boyfriend a loser and suspicious of her sister a slut Thorne doesnt much care about his characters never moving beyond the surface of their office gossip and daily grind Comparing the character of Martin to real-life magazine editors is particularly uninspired He didnt photograph as well as Dylan Jones GQ and lacked the cast-iron connections of Peter Howarth Esquire Its hard to imagine Thorne bothering to get out of bed to write such a lineJHRembrandts Whore by Sylvie Matton CanongateAt the age of 20 Hendrickje Stoffels goes to work as a servant for Rembrandt Rembrandts wife Saskia died during childbirth This is a house filled with sculptures and weapons paintings of Christ and windows offering views of leaves changing colour Stoffels learns how to make hutsepot stew and play cards and dice with Titus Rembrandts seven-year-old son Sometimes she is sent to the masters studio with a pitcher of beer and herrings and watches over his shoulder as he paints nameless colours on greasy canvases Stoffels begins to pose for Rembrandt and soon she is sleeping in her masters bed Rembrandts Whore is written in small pithy passages each one a sketch depicting a mood or a moment and is rich in historical detail - the fear of God and the plague are recurrent themes It is translated from the French yet somehow the awkwardness of the language only adds to the tenderness of Stoffelss naivety and her wonder at the joys of
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