Picks and Pans Review: My Life with Goya

updated 07/28/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/28/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

by Andrew Potok

A New York artist and refugee from the Nazis, Adam Krinsky, is the narrator of this novel. He has been brought to this country as an orphan by an uncle named Bolek, a successful furrier with an exclusive shop on 57th Street. In Europe the family considered itself Polish. In New York its members discover they are Jewish. Bolek is a loud, loving, delightful man with an eye for beautiful women. He eventually marries a young German girl because she was held by Albert Speer when she was a baby, and Bolek believes he is getting a kind of personal revenge. Even as a child, Krinsky drew pictures, and it is Goya's work with which he feels a continuing kinship—especially the etchings that depict the horrors of war. This is a sentimental novel that uses the art world of New York as its setting. The author, who was a painter, wrote an earlier non-fiction book, Ordinary Daylight, about the onset of blindness. His novel is lively, often comic and packed with color and drama. Bolek and his friends and relations are well worth meeting. (Arbor House, $17.95)

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