The Truth of the Line Paperback – 12 Nov 2013
Customers also shopped for
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
About the Author
Melanie Taylor was born in Pinner, England in 1953 and brought up on the Channel Island of Jersey. On leaving school she attended the local secretarial college. With secretarial skills learned, London beckoned and Melanie returned to England. After marriage, children and divorce, in 1999 she saw an advert for part-time degrees at Kingston University in her local newspaper and enrolled to study The History of Art, Architecture & Design, graduating in 2005. Redundancy and an inheritance gave her the luxury of being able to study full-time for her Master of Arts degree in Medieval & Tudor Studies at the University of Kent, Canterbury. Melanie now lives in Surrey and lectures in art and social history.
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
‘The Truth Of The Line’ is a testament to the detailed research which historian Melanie Taylor has put into this book. Nicholas Hilliard was a ‘court limner’ who painted miniature portraits; he was also a goldsmith which enabled him to create beautiful settings for his portraits. It was this position at court which enabled Hilliard to come into contact with many of the key players in Elizabethan society, and to be a part of some of that time’s most memorable moments. Quite a lot is known about the life and work of Nicholas Hilliard, but this novel is the first book that I know of to hint at a secret which the artist may have discovered when painting the young man who appears on the cover of this book. Who was he? And why the strange, almost nonsensical, motto? Although a work of fiction the details of the clues which Hilliard follows are based on Ms Taylor’s skilled interpretation of actual documents and paintings. There was a great deal of symbolism in Tudor art which enabled people to pass on a message without the use of incriminating words, and the author seamlessly moves from those symbols which are known in the art world to others which she has ‘discovered’ through her own detailed research. You will certainly be left wondering if Hilliard’s (and Ms Taylor’s?) conclusions about the young man he painted, and his relationship to key members at the royal court, could possibly be true.
If you are interested in history, or art, or cryptic clues then I think that you will enjoy this novel. It certainly left me wondering – what if…?
The story is not swashbuckling, nor is the dialogue the most exciting I've ever read. However, it brings us to see something of Hilliard's life times and especially his work.
I found it a magical read
I was delighted to find that not only was there an article about these Ps, (the title of the article is "The Virgin Queen, or perhaps not?"), but other articles about the images referred to in the book. Here there are discussions about, as well as the images of, the Phoenix and Pelican portraits, the two sketches of the trial of Mary Queen of Scots and much more. I will be keeping a weather eye on this website in future as it is both informative and raises questions for discussion.
Unlike the reviewer, John, who clearly wanted his swash to be buckled, I found this novel to be both entertaining and knowledgable. I prefer the well researched historical novel like those of Philippa Gregory and Hilary Mantel, so if you want something in the style of the sexually provocative and inaccurate TV production of The Tudors, this book is not for you.
"Come." She rose and led the way to a bay window where she sat down and and patted the space next to her indicating, that he sit. Her green silk gown rustled as she move. And from the worthy monarch a bit later on " ..come and sit down next to me " Elizabeth patted the window seat turned and looked out of the window contemplating the park..
Two pats of the seat before Nicholas got the message ?
And later .."Nicholas approached, bowed took ( the Queen's) hand and kissed it. Her hand cream was scented with attar of roses. He wished he could hold her hand longer and take deep breaths of that lovely scent of summer "
And another piece with a different lady "Alice smoothed an imaginary crease from the fold of her skirt with an immaculately manicured hand. She look up and smiled a shy little smile. Nicholas noticed how the blue of her gown matched the blue of her eyes and set off the soft pale gold of her hair. Soft curls tumbled down her back and wisps of hair softened the outline of her face."
So if you like this type of dialogue and interaction ...this could be the book for you.