Paint Your Wife by Lloyd Jones

I have been missing writing reviews lately and won’t be back to it for a little while yet, but here is a link to my most recent review, which I wrote for BookBrowse, along with a short article that goes beyond the book and looks into a related subject.

Paint Your WifeThe book I reviewed was Lloyd Jones Paint Your Wife.

Lloyd Jones is a New Zealand writer, most well-known for his novel Mr Pip which made the Booker Prize shortlist and won the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize.

Paint Your Wife is the story of the inhabitants of a small community, living in a town that has lost its charm and begins to rediscover it, when one of its citizens displays portraits of the towns women that he painted while their husbands were away at war.

It is a charming, fascinating insight, a kind of domestic novel, but from the male perspective and a tribute to picking up a paintbrush and pausing for some hours to actually observe what it is that is in front of you.


Pierre Bonnard, The Bathroom

The accompanying article is about a number of well-known artists mentioned in the book, who painted their wives.

One in particular, whom the character Alma was fascinated by, the French artist Pierre Bonnard, only ever painted his wife from memory, something Alma aspired to.

Here is the link to my review at BookBrowse, the complete review will only be available for a short time for non-members, so check it out soon. It’s in This Weeks Top Picks, currently.

Click on the title to go to the review:

Book Review, Paint Your Wife

To buy a copy of the book, you can find it by clicking here:

Paint Your Wife by Lloyd Jones


Lloyd Jones recently wrote a memoir about his family history, called A History of Silence, there is a link to an extraordinary radio interview below, I am really looking forward to reading it and shall be writing more about him here in the near future.

A History of Silence


Radio Interview – Uncovering the Mystery of his Family’s Past

16 thoughts on “Paint Your Wife by Lloyd Jones

  1. I hope all is well after your move and that you may grace us all with your thoughtful and eloquent reviews once more. Take care of yourself and come back when you’re ready. We’ll be waiting!

    Congratulations on getting this review published. It was lovely, as was expected.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, Mr Pip. I thought the author’s name sounded familiar (my old book group read Mr P back in the day). Congratulations on the publication of your review of this new one – that’s great news, Claire. I’m heading over to read it now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Jacqui, yes Lloyd Jones got close to winning the Booker and Mr Pip was a wonderful read. This one shows his interest in the impressionists and though it’s domestic fiction, it has the air of a fable, that allure of the reader to want them all to experience some kind of epiphany. 🙂


    • Neither was I and I couldn’t find any interviews with the author about it, very curious as it’s a wonderful novel. I guess it predates his success and has been somewhat neglected, it’s never been published in the US, so great to see that it’s finally going to be. His memoir/family history sounds fascinating as well, I can’t wait to read it.


  3. This is the second Lloyd Jones review from a trusted blogger I have read in the past week (thank you!- and what a coincidence!). I adored Mr Pip but haven’t tried anything else so far… suspect this one may reach my tbr pile!


  4. Pingback: Paint Your Wife, by Lloyd Jones #BookReview | ANZ LitLovers LitBlog

  5. I’ve just read this (finally!) and loved it. I can also recommend The Book of Fame (cheap as chips on Kindle) and also Hand Me Down World which is a stunning book.
    Yay for Kiwi authors!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Isn’t it great! Have you read The Transformation by Catherine Chidgey? Another underated, little known treasure, it probably comes to mind because I’m read Edward Carey’s ‘Little’ which has equally interesting but slightly eccentric characters. Thanks for the recommendations, looking them up now.


  6. Pingback: Paint Your Wife, by Lloyd Jones | ANZ LitLovers LitBlog

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