I have been reading Ken La Salle’s work for a while now and he crosses genre lines with ease. Whether you like zombies, cookies or art, he is sure to have something for your reading pleasure.
Now, let’s hear from some of the characters of Work Of Art by Ken La Salle.
Through the magic of modern publishing, the following interview was conducted prior to the events in Work of Art, Book One: An Intention of Flowers.
Q. You’re the new art instructor at Santa Ana High School. What do you see as your most important job?
Andy Hollis (New Art Instructor at Santa Ana High): Aside from figuring out when my breaks are? I think too many people these days focus on the whole idea of “following your dreams,” as if that’s somehow a good thing. No, kids who take art classes need to be reminded that they won’t make a whole lot of money in their field and need to make their focus more practical.
Q. What if I told you that you were going to go to jail for a kid who was following his dream?
Andy Hollis: Me? Oh, no. You got the wrong guy.
Q. You’re an administrator at Santa Ana High School. What is your opinion of Andy Hollis?
Winny Medvescek. (Administrator at Santa Ana High): Who?
Q. Andy Hollis? The new art teacher?
Winny Medvescek: Oh, that guy. To be honest, I’m not expecting an awful lot. He’ll be lucky if he remembers anybody’s name.
Q. What if I told you that you’re really going to go out on a limb for him?
Winny Medvescek: A limb? Is there also a million bucks at the end of that limb?
Q. As a renowned artist, you probably have some opinion about young artists.
Tom (Renowned Artist): Yeah, I do. My opinion is they should go away and leave art to adults.
Q. But isn’t your son an aspiring artist?
Tom: My son is an aspiring pain in my ass. Art’s no field for young people. They should go into something more practical. Like accounting or business.
Q. And what would you do to stop someone like you’re son from –
Tom: You don’t want to know how far I’d go and neither does he or anyone else who gets in my way, believe me.
Q. And that’s it for this preview interview. You’ll see a lot more of Tom and Winny and Andy Hollis in Work of Art: An Intention of Flowers. Any final words?
Tom: Yeah. Leave me alone.
Winny Medvescek: You’re going to need a hall pass to leave and if you didn’t park in the right area your car will already be towed. Our service is very aggressive.
Andy Hollis: An Intention of what?
Well, guys, I guess all that’s left is to say thanks for visiting.
I love the cover for Work of Art by Ken La Salle, when something so simple can say so much.
What is your definition of art? After reading Work of Art by Ken La Salle, you may change your mind.
The whole time I’m reading, I’m trying to take notes, but the words won’t come. This is one of those books that took me down a road I didn’t anticipate, but I was happy to have traveled.
Andy Hollis is fascinated, some would say obsessed, with Joseph Avilla, a young artist who is painting flowers on the asphalt parking lot. Why? Some would ask, why not?
Joseph has a home, a mother and a father, but Andy only sees him painting in the parking lot at all hours of the day and night.
Andy is an art teacher and thinks Joseph needs to be in his class. I think the one who will learn the most is Andy.
We all march to a different drummer and have to find our own way, though a little help from our friends never hurts.
The characters and their motivations grow and change, as do the situations they find themselves in.
This is one of those reviews that was hard for me to write. I just can’t seem to find the words…BUT, once I started to read Work of Art, I couldn’t stop until I reached the end and I am really looking forward to the next one.
Ken La Salle writes with attitude, sarcasm, wit. and humor. His books always surprise me and that is a very good thing.
I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of Work of Art by Ken La Salle.
Thick tempera paint.
A parking lot filled with history, fear, and regret.
A young man named Joseph Arillo sits in the parking lot and paints the pavement with flowers.
And Andy Hollis steps in it.
As the new art teacher at Santa Ana High School, he’s too curious about Joseph’s Flowers and unravels both of their lives in his pursuit for answers.
He learns that it’s all part of a rite of passage, an absurd test started by Joseph Arillo’s father, the suspiciously world-renowned artist named only Tom. Which also connects to the drama teacher at Santa Ana High, Katie Bustos. Whose daughter, Desiree, may or may not be dating Joseph. Who is putting himself in danger from a local gang, the lot’s mysterious history, and the police.
Andy puts himself in danger of losing his job, his home, and his freedom. If he can’t solve the riddle of Joseph’s Flowers, both of their lives will go up in smoke – despite any help from Winny, the old, Slovakian bureaucrat at school, or his students, or Tom himself.
But is Tom trying to help? And is Joseph really up to his father’s test?
And is Andy really fit to be a teacher? He doesn’t understand kids, can’t get to school on time, and… doesn’t appear to care about art or families or anything. But Joseph’s Flowers will challenge everything Andy believes: about himself, about the world, and most importantly of all about art.
Before Andy and Joseph are finished, they will witness the power art has to provide inspiration, to waken our hearts, and to shatter everything you ever believed about humanity.
An Intention of Flowers is the first book in a 5-book series, modestly titled Work of Art, about growing into the person you always wanted to be, making the most of what you have to give and not just what you have, and the power in each of us when we chose to be ourselves.
ABOUT KEN LA SALLE (From Amazon)
Author and Playwright, Ken La Salle grew up in Santa Ana, California and has remained in the surrounding area his entire life. He was raised with strong, blue collar roots, which have given him a progressive and environmentalist view. As a result, you’ll find many of his stories touching those areas both geographically and philosophically. His passion is intense humor, meaningful drama, and finding answers to the questions that define our lives.
MY KEN LA SALLE REVIEWS
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