Fiction, Finding Your Self, Fitch-Janet, Mystery

#732 Paint it Black by Janet Fitch

Paint it Black by Janet FitchPaint it Black by Janet Fitch

Josie lived in California. She left home and became an art model, during the eighties. Her boyfriend was named Michael and he was everything to Josie. It was as if she was addicted to him. He painted her. They did things together. They fulfilled each other, or it seemed to Josie that they did.

One day, Michael told Josie that he needed space to paint for a while. He left. He told her he was going to a house. Michael never came back though. Josie got a call from the coroner’s office to come down and identify the body. It was Michael.

Josie was devastated and angry. She began trying to piece together what had happened. He had killed himself, but why? She read his journals. She looked at everything in his apartment. She spoke to his mother, Meredith. Josie soon found many lies in what Michael had told her. Why had he lied?

After getting to know his mother more, through a few disastrous and tension-fraught meetings, she suspected an abusive and strange relationship that had existed between Michael and his mother.

She retraced his final days, his final hours. She understood more about why Michael had done it.

What I liked

I’m not a huge fan of this book. It certainly had flow. It certainly moved.

What I didn’t like

This whole book is dark and destructive. I think that was the author’s point though. It’s just so dark. Josie seems bent on destruction. She’s careless with her life. It’s like she’s running head-long into a fire, without protective gear or the intent to save anyone else, just to see if she can run through a fire. Michael was destructive himself, as is demonstrated by his suicide. The whole book is despair.

I don’t have hope for any of the characters. I don’t like any of them. It isn’t easy to be around people who are seemingly always in despair. I feel as if this book was under the influence, by this, I mean I felt like the book was on drugs…high…not an accurate depiction of life, but a hazy look at life through and impaired eye.

It was so hazy in nature, that it was difficult for me to follow. Which, I guess, would be the same effect if I were high.


Once you take a look at your real life after reading this, you’ll feel instantly happier.

Weigh in

If you have read this book, do you feel the same haziness?

The destructive people–the ones that steer headfirst into self-destruction, are they easy people to be around?


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