The Virgin Blue: Historical fiction from the multimillion copy bestselling Auteur of Girl with a Pearl Earring (Libérer)

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Read this for a book group I enjoyed it but not

as much as 
much as other books The story takes place in France After purchasing the ebook I also bought the audiobook It was wonderful hearing the French pronunciations And both books sync The story is about a woman who moves to France and while iving there starts to Chia, lin et psyllium (CHIA2) look for her ancestors It s an unusual journey Saying might ruin the book for future readers I really enjoyed this book once I started reading I didn t want to put it down Chevalier has a great style and I enjoy discovering aspects of history I would otherwise have known nothing about The ending of this book reuires the reader to decide themselves what they think happened to the characters There has been aot of criticism Recettes végétariennes inratables ! levelled at the character of Ellle However I could identify with her struggles to fit in and heroneliness having Tartes fines, grosses tourtes et belles tatins (TFGT) lived abroad Such struggles canead you to Mirazur look for comfort in the arms of someone else who you feel understands what you are going though One thing about the novel that still puzzles me is why the hearthchimney were placed in a strange place in the room of the house and not where planned I do not understand the significance of this If aarge hole for the hearth stone had to be dug anyway then why choose to dig it there I would recommend this and all other books by this author The first of Tracy Chevalier s novels this story focuses as many of her ater books on a very specific time in historyIsabelle from 16th century France is brought together with Ella who has moved to France from 21st century CaliforniaFor a first novel this is very well accomplished Having found her style in this book #I can see that the author has gone on to write many successful novels She clearly researched #can see that the author has gone on to write many successful novels She clearly researched subjects well and has the ability to use her research to tell a good story rather than allowing the book to be overtaken by information a mistake that many novelists makeThere is a big interest in the geography of the area as Ella searches for her ancestors I thought that the book would have been enhanced with a map and I found having a map of the area on my aptop helped me plot the travels and add to the enjoymentA book which is well worth reading for a fan or anyone who ikes a good historical novel This novel is told in alternating timelines One is in the 16th century in France and revolves around Catholics and emergening Protestants in rural France The other storyline involves an American woman Elle whose husband was transferred to Toulouse France They moved to a small town where she feels unwelcome Her French was weak which didn t helpIn the beginning I enjoyed the contemporary story a ot than the historical one but ater I enjoyed the historical story The stories were Tied Together Through Elle together through Elle research on her family tree in France and SwitzerlandI could understand Elle s oneliness especially since her French was weak and there were apparently no other Americans in the small town However I could not understand why she would get involved with a male chauvinist and not share her thoughts with her American husband I thought she treated him shabbilyThere were some events that seemed to be parano. A triumph Excellent Time OutA beautifully crafted story shot with vivid colours The TimesAn intriguing and poignant read Sunday ExpressSuch an achievement for a serious writer that you feel it deserves an award IndependentShe was called Isabelle and when she was a small girl her hair changed colour in The Virgin Blue: Historical fiction from the multimillion copy bestselling author of Girl with a Pearl EarringRmal were not explained to my satisfaction such as the blue dreams during pregnancy or following sex The ending of the contemporary story seemed very ambiguous The ending of the historical story seemed clearerOn the plus side I enjoyed the writing and it seemed to have been proofread Anyone who enjoys envisioning themselves iving in a foreign culture a Chez moi - Automne hiver la Peter Mayles or Frances Mayle will find this Tracy Chevalier s first novel of interest purely for the reactions to cultural differences that Ella the primary character undergoes throughout this otherwise muddled melodramaUnlike Chevalier s popular and critically acclaimed novel Girl With A Pearl Earring The Virgin Blue does not immerse the reader in theong gone world captured within a painting Instead we are treated to dual narratives one the voice of Isabelle a young woman of the 16th century caught between her innate devotion of the Virgin Mary and her in Chemins croisés laws Huguenot beliefs and Ella Isabelle s modern day American descendant adjusting painfully toife in a small town in France under the careful guise of researching the French branch of her family tree Ella s search is prompted by disturbing dreams of the color blue the color worn by the statue of the VIrgin revered by Isabelle centuries before When Ella s ancestral discoveries presage the next chapter in Isabelle s sad ife and simultaneously pinpoint problems of self identity in her own the plot takes both characters to Switzerland a known historical haven for 16th century Huguenot migr s where one particularly gruesome discovery puts much of the novel s angst into perspectiveAlthough Chevalier s prose moves the story along at a fast pace I still got the impression that certain aspects of it were not thoroughly worked through The motivation of many of the characters in the time passed story were not fully detailed or explained to support the ensuing actions even in retrospect Ella s romance with her jazz playing Frenchman almost seemed clich d her difficulty with her husband not really explored to warrant relationship ruptureNevertheless readers of Girl With a Pearl Earring will glimpse at the birth of ideas that Chevalier uses to brilliant fruition in her successful work The #Interplay Of Catholic Versus Protestant The Focus On The Covering #of Catholic versus Protestant the focus on the covering one s hair and the idea of a painting expressing otherwise untold emotions are tweaked to perfection in Girl With a Pearl EarringRead this one not for the mystery of the murky resolution but for Chevalier s insights on small town European pragmatism as compared with American optimism I m gradually working my way through Tracy Chevalier s books and have just reread her wonderful Remarkable Creatures one of my favourite books Spotted this and gave it a go I enjoyed the modern narrative of American Ella trying to assimilate into a small French town The historical strand grabbed me ess At times beautifully written At times deeply shocking Worth a read and gave my rusty French a workout This is a beautifully written debut novel Exuisite in its imagery and clarity of Les copains d'abord language the author tells two parallel tales One takes place in sixteenth century France during the Protestant. He time it takes a bird to call to its mateMidwife Isabelle du Moulin is marked as different by both her red hair and herove for the Virgin Mary in her rich blue robes As religious fervour sweeps 16th century France Isabelles striking ikeness to the Madonna puts her in danger when her village is enra.
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