by: Jessie Burton
On a brisk autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman arrives in Amsterdam to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt. But her new home, while splendorous, is not welcoming. Johannes is kind yet distant, always locked in his study or at his warehouse office–leaving Nella alone with his sister, the sharp-tongued and forbidding Marin.
But Nella’s world changes when Johannes presents her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. To furnish her gift, Nella engages the services of a miniaturist–an elusive and enigmatic artist whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in eerie and unexpected ways . . .
Johannes’ gift helps Nella to pierce the closed world of the Brandt household. But as she uncovers its unusual secrets, she begins to understand–and fear–the escalating dangers that await them all. In this repressively pious society where gold is worshipped second only to God, to be different is a threat to the moral fabric of society, and not even a man as rich as Johannes is safe. Only one person seems to see the fate that awaits them. Is the miniaturist the key to their salvation . . . or the architect of their destruction?
Enchanting, beautiful, and exquisitely suspenseful, The Miniaturist is a magnificent story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.
Helen says: 🤓🤓🤓🤓
This was my favorite book of the month. What a story! Amsterdam in the 1600’s was a subject I knew very little about. The author did her research though- great historical fiction. I felt like I was there with them in the damp, nasty canals and city center. Often when I think of “olden times’, I imagine everyone to be squeaky clean and somewhat puritan in thought and deed, but (good golly!) these characters had some dark secrets that came to light. I felt creeped out and anxious as I plowed through this one, but in a good way- no spoilers. This would make a great mini-series. Loved it!
Holly says: 🤓🤓🤓🤓
I loved The Miniaturist! It is different from any book that I have read. I don’t recall reading any other novel set in Amsterdam in the late 1600’s. And if you have ever been to the Art Institute of Chicago and visited the miniature rooms there and are as obsessed about them as I am, you will be even more entertained. (If you have not seen the Thorne Miniature Rooms, put it on your list – it is fascinating). You will love Nella and root for her and all of her challenges. As you can imagine, there is a lot of “dark” to this story, but it is a really good one! This was my favorite of the month. I believe this is a three-episode series on PBS Masterpiece – I will definitely check it out.
One thought on “The Miniaturist”
Hey Helen and Holly … I would love to get on your mailing list!! I keep meaning to let you know. Amy sent me the link about the Miniaturist because I love all things miniature. Will this get me on your list???
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