Winner of the 2000 Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Award! Alex Award winner! Tracy Chevalier transports readers to a bygone time and place in this richly imagined portrait of the young woman who inspired one of Vermeer’s most celebrated paintings. History and fiction merge seamlessly in this luminous novel about artistic vision and sensual awakening. Girl with a Pearl Earring tells the story of sixteen-year-old Griet, whose life is transformed by her brief encounter with genius…even as she herself is immortalized in canvas and oil.
My opinion: I downloaded this book to my Kindle after seeing it in one of the winter sales. I was a little bit apprehensive about whether I would get on with this book as I can struggle with historical fiction set in this period. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the book as it was a fantastic read!
It is set in 17th Century Holland, but it does not feel overly old fashioned in the way it is written and really drags you into the life of the main character, Griet. The author has based this story on a real painting by Johannes Vermeer and has built up an amazing fictional account of how the painting came to be created.
The language in the story is fantastic. It is not overly wordy, yet paints a vivid picture in the readers mind, bringing to life the painters art through the art of writing. I would definitely recommend this book and will go back to read it again at some point.
My rating: Five stars
Originally reviewed at Reading in Progress