I feel like I should start off by saying that I did like the book. I really did. I just don't like the main character or most of his friends. So I suppose it is highly realistic, because I don't like a lot of people (unless you are a member of the Book Club, then you are awesome and I love you). Here is where I might ruin the book if you haven't finished so stop reading.
Theo is a messed up dude. He was messed up from the very beginning. He was already in trouble when the book starts. He is the guy who you gave an inch and he took a mile. He is the one who ruined it for everyone else. And what hurts the most is that he has potential not to be a total dick-weed. He does. He just never capitalizes on it.
Clearly he can be charming and nice, but for the most part he is not someone who I want to hang out with. The entire time he is hanging out with Boris I kept expecting one of them to die or get seriously injured, perhaps maimed, like loosing an eye. Do I understand the coping of loss with drugs? Sure. Do I think that coping should last for 14 years...not so much. Seek some help. You have people who care about you. There's Hobie who is clearly doing way more than he should and the Barbour family. Talk to your lawyer. I don't even give a crap about that stolen painting and neither would they. Jesus. Communicate you little shit.
Okay let's talk about that painting. The way it was described in the book I developed an image in my head. It was not the image of the actual painting. The actual painting is a let down to be honest. Look at it:
Eh. Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the artists will persuade me to some other opinion, but my initial reaction is....okay, whatever.