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The Burnt Orange Heresy

Charles Willeford

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The classic neo-noir novel acclaimed as Willeford’s best, soon to be a major film

Fast-talking, backstabbing, womanizing, and fiercely ambitious art critic James Figueras will do anything—blackmail, burglary, and beyond—to make a name for himself. When an unscrupulous collector offers Figueras a career-making chance to interview Jacques Debierue, the greatest living—and most reclusive—artist, the critic must decide how far he will go to become the art-world celebrity he hungers to be. Will Figueras stop at the opportunity to skim some cream for himself or push beyond morality’s limits to a bigger payoff?

Crossing the art world with the underworld, Willeford creates a novel of dark hue and high aesthetic polish. The Burnt Orange Heresy—the 1970s crime classic now back in print—has lost none of its savage delights as it re-creates the making of a murderer, calmly and with exquisite tension, while satirizing the workings of the art world as the ultimate con.