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Painting By Numbers
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Painting By Numbers

By Tom Gillespie
ISBN 978-1908910370
Category thriller
Winter 2012


Day after day, Jacob Boyce “ faltering academic and failing husband “ visits a 17th century allegorical painting hanging in a Glasgow art gallery. Using a series of measurements and calculations, he creates a mathematical theory that will decipher the code locked into its canvas. But, one day, the object of his obsession begins to move.

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Author's Biography

Tom Gillespie, also known as Tom Reid, was born and grew up in a small town just outside Glasgow.  After completing a Masters in English at Glasgow University, he spent the next ten years pursuing a financially ruinous musical career as a singer/songwriter, playing, recording and touring the UK and Europe with his band.  He now lives in Bath with his wife, daughter and hyper-neurotic cat, where he works at the University as an academic English lecturer. Tom is a published English Language author and his songs and stories have featured in a variety of teaching resource books, journals and articles.


I could not stop reading. A STUNNINGLY clever and MESMERISING read that will keep you enthralled to the very last page. Alison Wells, author I read the last page and I IMMEDIATELY wanted to start over again... Reading with Monie [Gillespie]... is the NEW Dan Brown with a splash of John Grisham. I couldn't put it down. 10/10 Minxemoo Reviews 

An ABSOLUTELY thrilling thriller. When they coined the phrase 'This book is a real page turner', they were talking about 'Painting By Numbers' S & J Book Shelf Reviews 

A story that had me thinking. Even after I'd finished it, I had to go back and read parts of it again. I was completely FASCINATED... The eBook Review 

Price: £7.99

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Reader Comments

A thoroughly enjoyable read!
Painting by Numbers is a surprising novel. It lulls you in to a falls sense of security in which you believe you know the way this is going to play out - thriller, a mystery to solve, articulate and intelligent hero with esoteric knowledge that he will use to muddle out the knotty puzzle in surprising and intriguing ways... And then... well and then it wallops you between the eyes with a whole new level of strange that is really quite mesmerising. I can say strongly enough how impressively Gillespie handles his increasingly spiraling and complex story threads in a manner that utterly enthralls the reader.
I absolutely loved this book. The main character is hopelessly flawed, the story is unique and the subject matter is engaging. It stands on its own as a truly original read.
Excellent read, good pace...a twisted darkness
Not what you would expect (in a good way!) Thought-provoking and chilling. A great read
A Real page turner and un expected ending, really enjoyed it
An amazing Read! Tom is a fantastic new author! I can't wait to read his next book!
You sense from the beginning that the lead character's life is beginning to spiral out of control, but the pace and momentum means you can hardly wait for the outcome. Great descriptive novel, loved the writing style. Hopefully more to come!
Loving this book! The twists and turns are amazing. Almost at the end and I have no idea what's gonna happen!
I didn't know what a page turner really was until I started reading Painitng by Numbers. It's brilliantly conceived and written - the type of book which you want to read straight through till the end - and yet you don't want it to end. If you're stuck for a present to buy, this is the one! More from Mr Gillespie please!!
Complex, bears re-reading
A gripping read from start to finish. Lots of twists and turns, a brilliant debut.
A gripping story, weird but gripping. Loved it. Totally unexpected twists and turns. I'm just starting to reread it now to pick up on all the little comments, ideas, language and images that Gillespie drip feeds into every chapter, every page.
The textile industry uses TPI=TM X √Count to measure the number of twists per inch in a yarn.... Fiction readers will measure twist per pages in yarns against Painting By Numbers!
Addictive,funny, strange and serious. A good read!!
I love this book. A heart-thumping, mind-bending thrill of a read from cover to cover.
A fantastic read, spellbinding.
A mesmerizing story from an author who knows how to use his words!
I love Painting by numbers, it's a great book. Have read it twice. Tom is a very talented writer and knows how to keep a girl (and boy) enthralled. If you haven't read it yet go get it right now. You won't regret it.
this book is addictive...... loved the twist n turns that grips you with every page.....
This was a very interesting read for me. You have the main character Jacob Boyce who is borderline obsessive about a particular painting in a Glasgow Art Gallery completely forgetting about the life around him. There are some really great descriptions in this book, which definitely helped me picture what is going on at the time. I really enjoyed the suspense in this story and also the little bits of information about art history. I have to admit that I do not really know a lot about art history so the extra bits of information in the story definitely helped me to understand more about the story. This is a very enjoyable book, especially with the suspense side of things and trying to figure out things at the same time as the main character although as maths was not my best subject, I did struggle at times to keep up to the mathematical side of things.
This book made me snarl at the other members of my household, for daring to interrupt whilst I was reading! I expected some sort of 'twist', but never this one! Highly recommended.
Fabulous book.. thoroughly recommended