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The Miniaturist Paperback – 4 Jan 2007

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'This lyrical and mannered novel.' -- Georgia Metcalfe, THE DAILY MAIL

Book Description

'A tale of immense originality and intrigue. The Miniaturist is every bit as perfect and detailed as a Mughal painting should be. Well crafted in all its details of colour and texture, it is an intensely passionate creation' Observer

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First Sentence
'Rise early,' the Khwaja whispered, bringing his face close to Bihzad's ear, spraying his cheek with yesterday's wine. Read the first page
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Art 101 30 Jan. 2005
By Lee Armstrong - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Kunal Basu's tale is an interesting episodic journey that follows the life of an artist Bihzad from his young days as a boy who loves to draw to his time as an old man. The book is an adventure that takes us through 16th century India to the Mogul Empire. Many of the terms in the book require a bit of getting used to such as the boy's father who is head artist is called the "Khwaja." The "Darogha" is the head of the artists' workshop called the "kitabkhana." Once the unusual nature of the terms become more familiar, we relax into what is a very interesting tale. It makes sense that in an era before the wide use of printing presses and photography that rulers needed legions of artists to produce their images to be presented throughout their empire. I felt like I was learning a bit about the history of art & the status of the artist. Bihzad is a master who falls a bit too much in love with his Emperor and therefore paints the wrong pictures resulting in banishment and a rather endless sojourn in the desert. Many of the characters that flit into the story are sweetly drawn such as the birdwomen and the postal carrier. The scenes in the harem are drawn with an objective eye, almost clinical in detail. Overall, this is a very different tale set in a different culture & time, written by an Indian author. Enjoy!
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