“The surface of Amsterdam thrives on these mutual acts of surveillance, the neighborly smothering of a person’s spirit.”
This book is good because it vividly describes a long-ago 17th century Amsterdam where trade was everything and religion ruled all. Petronella arrives at the Brandt household as an 18-year-old bride. Her husband is kind yet distant and Petronella has to contend with her sharp-tongued sister-in-law Marin, who clearly has secrets of her own. At the centre of this strange family is Petronella’s unusual wedding present: a cabinet sized replica of their home. Petronella enlists the help of the elusive miniaturist to furnish the little home which has more to it than first appears.
What first drew me to the book was its blue-edged pages. I know its a very fickle thing but it made the book really stand out. At times the story did drag but it made up for it in the end. Bitterly tragic but ultimately hopeful, I wish one day Burton writes a sequel.
Some of the characters were a bit underdeveloped but the book was rather good, all things considered.
MY RATING: ***.5 / *****