Monday, 30 November 2015

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

The Miniaturist follows the life of Petronella. A woman who has just moved to Amsterdam to live with her recent husband who she will only be meeting for the third time. Her husband buys her a present of a miniature of their house which she hires a local miniaturist to furnish. However, all is not what it seems with the family and the miniaturist seems to know everyones secrets...

I loved this. This is one of my favourite books ever. That's a bold statement. So when I looked on Goodreads I was surprised to see so many low ratings for the book! I enjoyed everything about this book. What really had me was that chapter at the beginning. Going back after finishing the book and seeing how Burton tied everything together from the start.

What really stood out was the research Burton did for this book. She initially based her book on the real Petronella Oortman who owned a dolls house. When reading this I could see how much research she did by the attention to detail. As well as this, she has a few parts at the back of the book to show her research and give the reader more information. As a historian, I guess I really like books which have loose historical backgrounds.

What exactly did I like about this book? I liked the story, I was intrigued, I needed to read more and find out what was going to happen. It drew me in. Many reviewers seemed to dislike the book because it's so unbelievable and the characters aren't relatable or believable. Hey guys guess what?! It's a book! What's the point in every book you read being believable or just like real life?

I really enjoyed the topic of sodomy. This is something I have studied during my time at university and found it interesting that Burton focused on a man who committed sodomy but hid it from the world. This is something that we couldn't comprehend today, hiding your real feelings because not hiding them would result in being charged with death.

Overall, I would give this book 5 out of 5 stars and would recommend to everyone.

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