Sophia s painting hangs in the Rijksmuseum Others of her, with different titles and different painters, hang in the Dresden museum Scholars quarrel about her identity Is she Venus, is she Delilah Like the scales of a precious tulip bulb, Sophia s life story is peeled away by the people who knew her the most intimate Her husband, Cornelius Sandvoort, her maid Maria, the fish seller, Willem and the painter Jan van Loos During the tulipmania of the 1600 in Holland, when greedy mongers gambled and lost fortunes, a beautiful girl falls victim to ambition, desire, and dreams, leading to grand deception, heartbreak and tragedy.This is the story of tulips and art and human failures Through the eyes of history, religion and international commerce, a colorful collage of emotions and actions fill up the broad canvas Deftly concealed to the naked eye, disguised below the rich textures and the bold actions of the painter, hides a somber undertone of mystery And long after the girl is gone, her painting still mesmerizes scholars and public alike.And somewhere in the future, an author will come along and, through imaginative prose, as rich in color as the paintings, will try and explain Sophia to the world who lived through the boom and bust of tulipmania.A great read RECOMMENDEDPS The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert, will be a great complimentary read to this one. This book is not very good at all I plan on leaving it in Singapore to increase my distance from it. Real Rating 2.5 of fiveOh forever Tedious Always an older man whose beautiful young wife is misunderstood, uninterested, bored by himand it s his fault Then she meets a handsome young artist who unleashes her primal passions the way her old man can t, or won t, or doesn t want to.Oh poor poor little lady eyeroll Then we get the filmed version with that human blancmange Dane DeHaan as the Struggling Artist Why anyone would think that blah little boy was hot beggars my imagination.So the book got exactly the film it deserved A halfway decent story halfway to good in book or film, so be warned that you re using your eyeblinks for a pretty surface without a shred of substance As a side note, why is an English accent shorthand for foreigner in all films regardless of nation where they re set I read this for a Library book club I must be getting old and cranky I found the prose almost physically painful to read The characters unsympathetic, the plot unbelievable I kept thinking about how much time I had left before I die and why was I devoting my energies to finishing this. A Tale Of Art, Beauty, Lust, Greed, Deception And Retribution Set In A Refined Society Ablaze With Tulip FeverIn S Amsterdam, Tulipomania Has Seized The Populace Everywhere Men Are Seduced By The Fantastic Exotic Flower But For Wealthy Merchant Cornelis Sandvoort, It Is His Young And Beautiful Wife, Sophia, Who Stirs His Soul She Is The Prize He Desires, The Woman He Hopes Will Bring Him The Joy That Not Even His Considerable Fortune Can BuyCornelis Yearns For An Heir, But So Far He And Sophia Have Failed To Produce One In A Bid For Immortality, He Commissions A Portrait Of Them Both By The Talented Young Painter Jan Van Loos But As Van Loos Begins To Capture Sophia S Likeness On Canvas, A Slow Passion Begins To Burn Between The Beautiful Young Wife And The Talented Artist As The Portrait Unfolds, So A Slow Dance Is Begun Among The Household S Inhabitants Ambitions, Desires, And Dreams Breed A Grand Deception And As The Lies Multiply, Events Move Toward A Thrilling And Tragic ClimaxIn This Richly Imagined International Bestseller, Deborah Moggach Has Created The Rarest Of Novels A Lush, Lyrical Work Of Fiction That Is Also Compulsively Readable Seldom Has A Novel So Vividly Evoked A Time, A Place, And A Passion Update Feb, 2017I first read this 5 years ago for book club and enjoyed it at that time I reread this month to dip back in before the movie based on it is released Feb 24 I enjoyed it the second time around as well, keying in on some different things perhaps than on the initial outing I had completely forgotten the ending I especially like Moggach s use of the brief moral maxims, quotes and bible verses at the beginning of each short chapter Each does the job of connecting the reader to the moral dilemmas of the characters as well as the culture of the times It will be interesting to see how this plays out on film I really enjoyed this book once it got going It takes place in the early 1600 s Holland during Tulip Mania, something I hadn t heard of before In the early 1600 s tulips were discovered by the Dutch in Turkey The Dutch went crazy for them and started trading and speculating on the most highly prized bulbs This is a morality tale that includes infidelity, true love, art, tulip speculation, children out of wedlock, etc Plus, I felt it was educational as to the culture in Holland in the early 1600 s I liked how the book was written, each short chapter starting with a moral maxim or a quote about art relevant to the chapter At times I felt where it was headed was predictable, but there were enough surprises to keep it interesting right to the end.This is an interesting review and it appears that a movie based on the book has been an on again off again project since the early 2000 s At one point Jude Law and Keira Knightly were slated to star Still has not been made, however I think it would make a good movie.This book was a selection from the Literature in Art program at our local art museum, MIA, in Minneapolis I would not have read this book otherwise, I think, and the tour of selected works of art from that period enhanced my enjoyment of both the book and the art. My husband is Dutch, I ve heard of the tulip mania that hit Holland, I like historical fiction all the arrows were pointing to a book with possibility Hah Not to be Think instead of Boy meets Girl, Girl happens to be married to kindly older man, Boy and Girl fall into instant lust, Girl horribly betrays kindly husband, Boy behaves foolishly in every manner possible and on and on until we have a 17th century soap opera in full bloom haha Tulips do figure in, but just enough to set the stage for lunacy, deceit and,finally, ruin Surprisingly, the kindly old man benefits in the end and not from tulips, but from unexpected liberation of heart and spirit Anyway, this is a frivolous and silly read Not even good beach material. Nearly 3.5 If you liked Girl with a Pearl Earring and The Miniaturist, you may also enjoy this atmospheric, art inspired novel set in the 1630s Originally from 1999, it s recently been adapted into a film Sophia, married off to an old merchant, falls in love with Jan van Loos, the painter who comes to do their portrait If Sophia and Jan are ever to be together, they ll have to scrape together enough money to plot an elaborate escape I thought this was rather soap opera ish most of the way through, though I was satisfied with how things turned out in the end The short chapters split between different perspectives with Sophia s the only first person voice make this a quick read.Favorite lines I see us as a painting Cornelis, his white lace collar against black, his beard moving as he eats The herring lying on my plate, its glistening, scored skin split open to reveal the flesh within the parted lips of my roll Grapes, plump and opaque in the candle light the pewter goblet glowing dully There is a purity about our love of flowers it is an act of homage, untempered by greed Tulips are the exception to his when I think of them lust rises within me, a shameful wave of heat. The tulip speculation bubble is only an aside in what is basically a 17th century soap opera The time period offered so much potential, not just the tulip bulbs, but also an age of great Dutch artists, unfortunately none of it is explored in any substantive way In retrospect, save 2 chapters one about a bulb grower and one about Jan s bulb trading, this novel could be transposed to almost any place time.Perhaps the best thing I can say is that it reads quickly with its short chapters The worst thing I can say is that all the characters are so incredibly obtuse it is a wonder the even survived to adulthood From a servant who cannot complete a task to anyone in 1600s Amsterdam who cannot recognize a bulb to anyone who would mistake a bulb for an onion to numerous folks who make major life decisions based on assumption without verification this novel stretches the limits of credulity at every turn.Not a waste of time, but a big dsappointment Perhaps a good airplane or beach read quick, light, easily disposable when done. This is one of my favorite reads, I read it a few times now Set in the 1600 s this story revolves around the Tulip mania that went on something I never knew about during that time An added bonus for me was that Deborah Moggach wrote the screenplay for Pride and Prejudice the Keira Knightley version which is another favorite.
Deborah Moggach is a British writer, born Deborah Hough on 28 June 1948 She has written fifteen novels to date, including The Ex Wives, Tulip Fever, and, most recently, These Foolish Things She has adapted many of her novels as TV dramas and has also written several film scripts, including the BAFTA nominated screenplay for Pride Prejudice She has also written two collections of short
- 281 pages
- Tulip Fever
- Deborah Moggach
- 09 February 2018 Deborah Moggach