), “He saw things in a way that others did not, so that a city I had lived in all my life seemed a different place, so that a woman became beautiful with the light on her face.”, “You're so calm and quiet, you never say. She describes the girl's expression "to be a mass of contradictions: innocent yet experienced, joyous yet tearful, full of longing and yet full of loss." Both were good, but the film had extraordinary sets and got the lighting and feel of the time period beautifully. Will it be better if I watch the movie first, and then read this book? Let us know what’s wrong with this preview of, Published Conditions apply. She turns from a loving, humble family girl to a house maid, who looks down on her parents and almost seems embarrassed by her background. I must also say that I have never been much of a Vermeer fan, but having read about Vermeer through Griet's eyes, I see his paintings as much more c. This book is gorgeously written. [21] Van Ruijven’s wife (Maria de Knuijt) later models for A Lady Writing a Letter. [19] When Griet enters the household, Vermeer is working on Woman with a Pearl Necklace and Tanneke mentions soon after that she had been Vermeer’s model for The Milkmaid. Her younger brother Frans is apprenticed outside and eventually her younger sister Agnes dies of the plague. During this episode it is recalled that she had previously appeared in Woman with a Lute and that her husband had seduced the maid who sat for The Girl with the Wine Glass. The story is subtle making it the perfect example that less is more in a story. I listened to this audiobook and was transported to Hans Vermeer's studio. She mixed his paints and posed for him, she never slept with him. She even had the audacity to suggest a change to painting which was incorporated by the artist. Girl With a Pearl Earring Summary. He has no interest in that which does not add to his work. This obviously mirrors the painter, Vermeer and Griet's relationship, but for me it never became anything more than a teenage crush and the novel seems immature as a result. I know that I had to constantly pull up images of his paintings as I read to actually see what Griet was describing. If the narrator is as unflinchingly, humorlessly intelligent and perceptive as she is made out to be, she understands too. ― Tracy Chevalier, quote from Girl with a Pearl Earring “It seemed to me that the baker had an honest response to the painting. Girl with a Pearl Earring, Tracy Chevalier Girl with a Pearl Earring is a 1999 historical novel written by Tracy Chevalier. This is a wonderful study in repression and tiny details. Van Leeuwenhoek was certainly interested in optical devices and it has been speculated that Vermeer made use of a camera obscura, but that is as far as the evidence goes. One presumes that Chevalier agrees with me, and this is what lead her to write a novel about the painting, its subject and its creator. The novel was adapted into a 2003 film of the same name and a 2008 play. Nothing too taxing and also quite believable. It would be fun to see the story Tracy invented for the girl posed in the portrait. 'Chevalier's writing skill and her knowledge of seventeenth-century Delft are such that she creates a world reminiscent of a Vermeer interior: suspended in a particular moment, it transcends its time and place' New Yorker, 'Chevalier's book is a delight' Simon Jenkins, Guardian, 'This is a wonderful novel, mysterious, steeped in atmosphere. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 July 2019. Apart from Girl with a Pearl Earring itself, in which Griet is the sitter, several more of Vermeer’s paintings feature in Chevalier’s novel. But then he gives her his wife’s pearl earrings to wear for a portrait, and a scandal erupts that could threaten Griet’s future…. It also analyses reviews to verify trustworthiness. Unable to add item to List. Griet also finds it difficult to keep on the right side of Tanneke, the other house servant, who is moody and jealous. For Walter Liedtke, the gallery's curator of European paintings, the success of [the exhibition] was due, at least in part, to Chevalier's novel.”[29], Page 7 in the HarperCollins paperback (2000). As Time magazine notes, Chevalier presents "an exquisitely controlled exercise that illustrates how temptation is restrained for the sake of art". Is it good? [11], Rather than writing a story of Vermeer having an illicit relationship with the household maid, Chevalier builds tension in the work with the depiction of their restraint. She had bought the poster as a nineteen-year-old and it hung wherever she lived for sixteen years. We actually see the painting of three or four of Vermeer's 35 through Griet's eyes. At their home, she befriends the family's oldest daughter, Maertge, but is never on good terms with the spiteful Cornelia, a younger daughter who takes after her class-conscious mother, Catharina. Not even his wife Catharina is allowed to enter the studio, so this arrangement causes a great deal of tension within the household. Girl With a Pearl Earring tells a short story using a lot of words. I read the book and saw the film. Griet realizes, however, that she could no more wear them as a butcher's wife than she could have as a maid. Descriptive and atmospheric. You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition. She also is given the responsibility of grinding the paints and even purchasing the colors from the apothecary. Girl with a Pearl Earring is a 1999 historical novel written by Tracy Chevalier. Her life is a fairly solitary one as she finds herself growing apart from her family while living as an outsider in another's home. Johannes Vermeer can spot exceptional beauty. An absolute triumph’ Woman’s Weekly. To create our list,... With precisely 35 canvases to his credit, the Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer represents one of the great enigmas of 17th-century art. In addition, it too started from an attempt to decipher the enigmatic look of the sitter in a painting of the period.[16]. Tracy Chevalier is the author of six novels, including the international bestseller Girl with a Pearl Earring, Remarkable Creatures, The Virgin Blue, Falling Angels, and The Lady and the Unicorn. Girl with a Pearl Earring, Tracy Chevalier. There Griet learns that Vermeer had asked for her painting to be hung in the room as he was dying. We actually see the painting of three or four of Vermeer's 35 through Griet's eyes. She has a website at www.tchevalier.com. Seeing as I slogged through this on account of a recommendation that arose from an art-class lecture on Vermeer, I was hoping that the art stuff would at least deliver. I really want to see the picture now, after wishing so hard that they would fall in love and live happily ever after. I know that I had to constantly pull up images of his paintings as I read to actually see what Griet was describing. There are some beautiful passages. I love this painting, but I have not read this book yet. As if these "privileges" were not causing enough disquietude within the family, matters only get worse when Vermeer agrees, at a friend's request, to paint Griet. They were the kind of voices we heard rarely in our house. Time, 'It has a slow, magical current of its own that picks you up and carries you stealthily along…a beautiful story, lovingly told by a very talented writer.' The Secret Of Eveline House: A Tale Of Tangled Secrets And A Search For The Truth. (Also really liked the 2003 film starring Colin Firth and Scarlet Johansson. Try again. Tracy Chevalier is the New York Times bestselling author of seven previous novels, including Girl with a Pearl Earring, which has been translated into thirty-nine languages and made into an Oscar-nominated film. As the novel progresses, Griet becomes increasingly aware that she is ‘for sale’". Johannes Vermeer can spot exceptional beauty. The restraint is also a function of the distanced style that Chevalier chose for her narrator, Griet. Cornelia seizes the chance to let Catharina discover this and in the resulting scandal Vermeer remains silent and Griet is forced to leave. Greet cleaned the studio every day and eventually helped the artist mix his paints. Although Antonie van Leeuwenhoek is known to have acted as executor to Vermeer’s will, there is no documentary proof of friendship between the two. This book features one of my favorite book heroines of all time. Mail on Sunday, ‘This sensually luminous novel brings Vermeer and his art to life through bold sumptuous prose.’Historical Novels Review. Chevalier noted that the "ambiguous look" on the girl's face left a lasting impression on her. The young maid, however, seems devoted only to her master and obeys his every wish. It is not a redeeming feature. Please try again. Approved third parties also use these tools in connection with our display of ads. Does anybody have read this book and also watched that movie? Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 June 2020. Jurassic Mary: Mary Anning and the Primeval Monsters, A Second Self: Elizabeth I, My Most Remarkable Friend, The Tuscan Girl: Completely gripping WW2 historical fiction, Song of the Shuttle: A transatlantic historical saga (The Lancashire Cotton Saga). I understand what the butcher said. But during the early months of her work at the Vermeers', Pieter, the son of the family butcher at the meat market, starts courting Griet. Griet is granted the privilege that no other family member has -- helping Vermeer in his studio. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 May 2018. She seemed to have an intrinsic understanding of the colour and layout of paintings. She possesses the laudable ability to maneuver 17th century Delft in a shrewd and practical manner while still retaining her love of art; finding beauty in even mundane things. Speaking of it, I'm sure there were many details left out, it's hard now to tell which, but it was definitely an advantage to put a face on the characters. The meager facts of his biography have been gleaned from a handful of legal documents. Tracy Chevalier's inspiration for the novel was a poster of Johannes Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring. Central character is a servant in the house of golden age Dutch painter Jan Vermeer and is used as the model for the painting 'Girl with a pearl earring'. Griet describes the painting to her father and also witnesses its creation in closer detail now that she is helping in the studio. This book gives the reader a window into the structure of Delft society of the period. An evocative look at life in Delft, Holland in the 1600’s. Hopefully, it will give me another perspective to appreciate this painting. At one point, a character tells Griet (the imagined Girl with a Pearl Earring) to be careful, since Vermeer does not see her, but r. I wrote a paper on artistic expression using Girl with a Pearl Earring as a source, since it is a painting, a movie, and a book. I did not like or feel compassionate toward a single character, I didn't feel any catharsis about ANYTHING, and I understood nary a motivation. I enjoyed this book. The moments in which Vermeer paints Griet are the most spellbinding of the book. The sexual tension is there, the latent longing for one another, the stolen glances, the gazing into each other's eyes, but the story never reaches a crescendo. What more can I say. I was working on. Over 2 years a quiet and obedient maid named Griet goes to live as a servant for Johannes Vermeer and his family. This takes up much of her time, and Griet arouses the suspicions of Catharina, but Vermeer's mother-in-law, Maria Thins, recognizes Griet's presence as a steadying and catalyzing force in Vermeer's career and connives at the domestic arrangements that allow her to devote more time to his service. Griet lives for two years at her employers’ and is only allowed to visit her home on Sundays, where the family circle is breaking up. I liked the description of how an artist works and how they make their paints. [27] Again, there is a high level of probability that Pieter van Ruijven was Vermeer’s patron, since 21 of the artist’s paintings belonged to his estate, but no documentary evidence survives.

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