The Lady and the Unicorn by Tracy Chevalier

This is another of Chavalier’s books about famous works of art, this time the unicorn tapestries from the 15th century.  This tale is woven in not quite as complicated a manner as a tapestry, though the stories told are rich.  I wished the character of the artist, Nicholas des Innocents, had been written deeper; I couldn’t quite understand his appeal to all the women falling for him.

Reviewed by Alpha

Girl With A Pearl Earring: a novel by Tracy Chevalier

Written from the point of view of the girl in this famous painting, this book is a surmised glimpse at who this girl could have been: a maid working for the Vermeer family.  This book is a frank portrait of a spirited girl who soon finds out how little she can actually choose.

Reviewed by Alpha

Big Stone Gap: a novel by Adriana Trigiani

I have managed to fill my summer with novels about strong women.  This novel is a delicious journey into Big Stone Gap, VA, along with all the curious small town characters who populate it.  A book where nothing terrible really happens and everything turns out OK: Perfect summer reading!

Reviewed by Alpha

Needles and Pearls: a novel by Gil McNeil

I’m breathless from just having finished this book.  I really love books about women: all the primary characters in this book are powerful women. Nothing terrifically bad happens in this book. It’s about forging ahead and dealing with the journey of life, I guess. I found it delightful, and I’m looking forward to reading more of this series.

Reviewed by Alpha

The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff

This novel contains two (actually three) stories:  one is the story of Ann Eliza Young, a wife of Brigham Young’s who went apostate and sued him for divorce.  The second is a modern murder mystery concerning members (and former members) of “The Firsts,” a polygamous cult based on the real-life FLDS.  The third is that of a young BYU grad student doing her research on the early polygamous roots of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  It is a compelling read; I had a hard time putting it down until I was finished!

Reviewed by Alpha