Author: Jessie Burton
This book follows Petronella Oortman or Nella as she begins her married life in 17th Century Amsterdam to a wealthy and much older man, Johannes Brandt. Her expectations of married life are soon crashed as she has a rocky start with the members of her new household and her new husband isn’t as enthused about the marriage as she’d imagined. He instead gifts her a miniature of their home which she decides to furnish by contracting the services of a miniaturist.
Things start getting a little creepy when the parcels the miniaturist sends mirror what is actually happening in the Brandt household. Nella begins viewing the miniaturist as some sort of prophet because if miniatures start predicting the future who wouldn’t right? Creepy dolls aside, the book tackles issues that are common in the 21st century; sexuality, feminism and race. And I’m not sure what 17th century Amsterdam was like but the protagonists handle these issues unbelievably well!
I enjoyed reading this book, the author has a way with words. The writing is really beautiful. I didn’t really connect with any of the characters but it’s one of those books you read where the sentences are so lovely you forgive the flaws.
My favorite quote from the book:
‘When you have truly come to know a person, Nella – when you see beneath the sweeter gestures, the smiles – when you see the rage and the pitiful fear which each of us hide – then forgiveness is everything. We are all in desperate need of it. . ‘