‘The Masterpiece’ paints beautiful story of love, redemption


Kiley Duggan

Inside the pages of Francine Rivers’ novel “The Masterpiece’ lies a story of redemption.

Roman Velasco, a successful artist in L.A., lives a life of comfort, filled with money and fame. To the outside world, he looks perfectly content and needs nothing, but his childhood fraught with poverty and conflict haunts him. To lower the echoes of the past, Roman tags buildings as the notorious graffiti artist “Bird.” Grace Moore, a single mother, is hired to be Roman’s personal assistant. In the emptiness of Roman’s life, Grace illuminates his need for life purpose and a relationship with God.

But Roman is not the only one who is haunted by the past; Grace too struggles with regrets. Still trying to rebuild her life from a sudden divorce and resulting fallout, Grace is reluctant to open up. But as Roman and Grace get to know each other, their pasts seem to connect.

“The Masterpiece,” a Christian novel written by Francine Rivers, is appropriately titled because one of the main characters is, in fact, an artist. As the reader continues it becomes apparent the title is less of  a connection to the main character, but is more and more of a connection to God’s hand in the lives of His children and how He is constantly making us into His masterpieces. In contrast to Francine Rivers’ other works of fiction, Rivers take a more modern approach highlighting stereotypes of today’s culture. Through this modern approach, Rivers is able to appeal to people engaged in today’s society.

‘The Masterpiece’ is an example of the power of grace in the lives saved and the lives lost in utter darkness.

— Kiley Duggan, 10

The book generated hype because “The Masterpiece” was Rivers’ first book since 2014. Going into the book, it was easy to make quick comparisons to Rivers’ other works, but by maintaining an open mind, readers will find this book is fresh and just as exceptional as her other novels. “The Masterpiece” is a book made for text-to-self connections since the book contains struggles people often find in life today. The story is a perfect balance between conviction and inspiration. “The Masterpiece” is an example of the power of grace in the lives saved and the lives lost in utter darkness.

Rivers never disappoints with the supreme detail shown through her characters and setting. Reading one of her books is often like a movie playing in my head as her books are more complex and vivid than other authors I have read, making her stories unfold like real life events rather than fictional story lines.

Rivers is not a shy writer; she is ready and able to discuss the most difficult topics in life including divorce, drug use, prostitution and gang life. Rivers constantly surprises me with her impeccable research and knowledge of the topics about which she writes. The book instantly grabbed my full attention, and after the first page I could not put the book down. I would stay up until 1 a.m. or neglect my homework for the sake of “one more page.” Jelly remnants or an oil stain from my breakfast or lunch can be found in my book because I was utterly unable to put the book down.

‘The Masterpiece’ is a beautiful story which will not only grab the readers’ attention but their hearts.

— Kiley Duggan, 10

Throughout the 512 pages in “The Masterpiece,” I found nothing in the book I disliked. Rivers used chapter transitions to fully develop each character individually, while also bringing the characters together. Though this book is a far cry from Rivers’ norm, I find this story is inspirational for the modern reader. The story itself pays less attention to romance but to God and a relationship with Him.  

“The Masterpiece” is sold in most retail stores including Barnes and Noble, Amazon and Lifeway Christian Stores, but is also available through Apple, Google Play and Audible at prices ranging from $15.39-$25.95. 

Overall, I would greatly recommend this book to mature readers, but they should prepare for introspection as the book tackles heavy topics. Even so, “The Masterpiece” is a beautiful story which will not only grab the readers’ attention but their hearts. Pick this one up, and who knows, it might become a new favorite.