Girl with the pearl earring book


Girl with a Pearl Earring is a historical novel written by Tracy Chevalier. Set in 17th-century Delft, Holland, the novel was inspired by local painter Johannes. by Tracy Chevalier (Goodreads Author) With precisely 35 canvases to his credit, the Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer represents one of the great enigmas of 17th-century art. I know almost nothing about art, but even I can tell that Girl With a Pearl Earring by Johannes Vermeer is a. The New York Times bestselling novel by the author of A Single Thread and At the Edge of the OrchardTranslated into thirty-nine languages and made.

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Girl With The Pearl Earring Book

The novel is narrated in the first person by a sixteen-year-old girl named Griet, who lives in the Dutch city of Delft. The story opens in the year. Not as erotic or as deviously suspenseful as Katharine Weber's The Music Lesson, or as original in conception as Susan Vreeland's interlinked short stories, Girl. Wholly ignorant of Johannes Vermeer, the Dutch Golden Age and art in general, I began Tracy Chevalier's Girl With a Pearl Earring unaware that I was lucky to.

They were the kind of voices we heard rarely in our house. I could hear rich carpets in their voices, books and pearls and fur. Her parents had decided, given their near destitution, to find Griet a position as a maid with a wealthy family. Her older brother had already been placed in a Delft tile factory. She was, after all, seventeen. Johannes Vermeer was a master painter, recognized even in his own time as one of the best, but he was a slow painter. He would only paint when he was inspired to paint. An empty purse or a rumbling stomach were never enough inspiration to make him paint faster. He averaged only two to three paintings a year. As someone who has always admired his paintings I do wish he had been more prolific with his brush, but the fact that there are so few paintings by Vermeer make them all the more precious. Griet is thrown into this chaotic household. The house is brimming with children, too many children even by the standards of the day. Their fortunes wane and fall based more on the property incomes of her mother than on the commissioned paintings of Vermeer. Each year the purse strings get pulled a bit tighter.

Ten years later, long after Griet has married Pieter and settled into life as a mother and butcher's wife, she is called back to the house following Vermeer's death. There Griet learns that Vermeer had asked for her painting to be hung in the room as he was dying. In addition, though the family is now poorer, Vermeer's will has included a request that Griet receive the pearl earrings that she wore when he painted her, which Van Leeuwenhoek forces Catharina to hand over.

Griet realizes, however, that she could no more wear them as a butcher's wife than she could have as a maid. She therefore decides to pawn the earrings and pay the fifteen guilders owed to her husband from the price. In Plume released the U.

Girl with a Pearl Earring (novel) - Wikipedia

Griet's ability to suggest to Vermeer how to improve a painting demands one stretch of the reader's imagination.

As Time magazine notes, Chevalier presents "an exquisitely controlled exercise that illustrates how temptation is restrained for the sake of art". It concentrates particularly on visual detail, both in the appearance of characters and of domestic surroundings, and their spatial placing in relation to each other. In addition, it too started from an attempt to decipher the enigmatic look of the sitter in a painting of the period.

Girl With a Pearl Earring Summary

Van Ruijven and other characters assume she is sexually available simply because she is an unchaperoned maid. Griet describes the painting to her father and also witnesses its creation in closer detail now that she is helping in the studio.

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.

This hangs on the wall to the right of The Concert. That has allowed Chevalier to integrate into her imaginary scenario some of the few facts that are known about Vermeer and so give her fiction the appearance of reality.

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. And there is certainly not the slightest hint that he was the sexual predator that Chevalier portrays.

Girl With a Pearl Earring

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. He finds reasons to have her help him by grinding paints and assisting with the objects that populate his paintings. It is only natural that a young girl would start to have feelings and dreams regarding a man such as Vermeer.

He is not only talented, but he is also attractive with those gray eyes that see so much more than anyone else. I preferred to think of him alone in his studio. Or not alone, but with only me. The soldier in The Procuress reminds me of Van Ruijven.

One of the most interesting things about this painting is the precariously perched pitcher. It makes me so nervous that I want to reach into the painting and move it to somewhere safer. Van Ruijven, like odious men always seem to be, is adept at finding young women alone.

Girl with a Pearl Earring

He is not wanting to gossip with her or exchange thoughts about the weather or to woo her or to cajole her into parting with her charms. His hands with fingers like hooks push against her clothes weighing the curve and shape of her.

She has to fend him off without offending him. Griet has another man in her life, not one that she would choose, but one that is infatuated with her. Being the wife of a butcher is a dream for many women because she and her family will always be well fed. A butcher is miles away from dream landscape of being the wife of a master painter.

Tracy Chevalier has deftly conceived the possibility of The Girl with the Pearl Earring being a maid in the Vermeer household. With each new revelation the tensions between Griet and Catharina tighten like lute strings pressing into tender flesh. Maria Thins, a realist, runs interference between all parties as best she can, but Catharina beset by jealousy and churlishness has difficulty seeing the bigger picture.

They felt that very little happened, but they must be the same people who think baseball is boring. I was on the edge of my seat while reading this book as if I were watching a ten pitch at bat in the bottom of the ninth with two outs.

The deception of the pitcher trying to outmatch the quick hands of the batter.

The shifting of the outfield depending on the ball the pitcher intends to throw next. The subtle communications between the catcher and the pitcher. Add a base runner at first and now the situation feels like Griet trying to maneuver her way through a world of lust, deviousness, and deceit. Does she run or does she wait for something to happen?

The painting that Vermeer paints of Griet is a compromise to Van Ruijven who wanted much, much more.

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