After earning a graduate degree in creative writing from the University of East Anglia, Tracy Chevalier was immediately recognized for her literary talent. In Girl with a Pearl Earring, she recreates the 17th-century world of Johannes Vermeer. This haunting work of historical fiction received rave reviews in publications as diverse as The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and The Christian Science Monitor. In 1664, sixteen-year-old Griet enters the Vermeer household as a servant. Daughter of a Delft tile maker, she has a natural eye for color and design. Daily, she cleans the studio, learning much about how Vermeer sees the people he paints. As his attention focuses on her, she slowly becomes one of his subjects. Tracy Chevalier fills this unusual love story with the shades, sounds, and textures of everyday life in Holland. Narrator Ruth Ann Phimister perfectly voices Griet's growing awareness of the intrigues surrounding her and the need to define the value of her life.
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by Tracy Chevalier
by Emily Barton
by Anna Quindlen
by Catherine Anderson
by Mindy Starns Clark
by Stephanie Grace Whitson
by Angela Hunt
by Francine Rivers
by Mildred Armstrong Kalish
"In seventeenth-century Delft, poor, Protestant, 16-year-old Griet must go to work in the Catholic household of Johannes Vermeer. A novel as detailed as the paintings of the Delft Master is read by Ruth Ann Phimister with care and wonderment. Griet and Vermeer grow close as she cleans his studio, grinds white lead, and eventually poses for him. The household is not privy to this intimacy, but Vermeer's wife, Catherina, and daughter, Marta, grow suspicious and jealous. Filled with characters from all strata of society, the story carries the listener on a voyage of time and culture. Phimister does not have to deal with much dialogue. This is a reminiscence, and Griet is a silent and pensive girl, but the overall flow of the reading is charming, entrancing, and engrossing. The finest way to listen to this beautifully crafted book is to have a Vermeer catalog at hand. The Concert, used in the novel to hide the fact that Vermeer is simultaneously painting Griet, was stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston and is still missing. B.H.B. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award. (c) AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine"
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