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The Gilder Paperback – January 1, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 310 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington (January 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0758263228
  • ISBN-13: 978-0758263223
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,577,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

I eagerly await her next book.
Kate Wilson
Through them, she also learned about love, lies, and the way one mistake can multiply into many.
Nora A. Deret
The Gilder is beautifully written and complete with dynamic, complex and compelling characters.
Sondra

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Penny on January 7, 2012
Format: Paperback
Kathryn Kay has given us a very complex main character who is sometimes sympathetic and sometimes naive and obtuse. At times I wanted to cheer Marina on, and at times I wanted to scold her and set her straight. And that makes for a terrific read! The Florence setting and descriptions of scenery and food are incredibly evocative for those who have visited and those who have not, and one easily gets a true sense of place. There are other characters that are well drawn and fully realized - not one seems designed to be a device to move the plot forward. The journey Marina takes to understand her past for her daughter's benefit is going to be real for every mother who reads the story, but the story is by no means limited in its reach in that way. The themes of hiding, forgiveness, mistakes, compassion, and finding truth are universal. The aspect of mystery makes it a page turner, but the language, the depth of the story, and the beauty of Florence as a backdrop make one want to linger.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By VRWC on July 6, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Well, obviously in the minority, this book did not resonate with me. I am becoming more and more skeptical about the reviews I find on Amazon. So many 5 star reviews by people who have over 20 pages of reviews (thank you Harriet Klausner) or one-time reviews only. The story centers on a woman artist (Marina) who was raised by parents more interested in their own lives than their daughter's. She travels to Florence Italy, fulfilling a broken promise made by her mom, meeting an American ex-pat husband and wife. Emotionally, Marina wants someone to love and love her and falls in love with the wife, but has a one-time fling with the photographer husband. She gets pregnant, moves home and raises her daughter by herself, not telling the father. She is be-friended by a lesbian couple who help her sort through her feelings, encouraging her to be honest with her daughter about her father (who has since died) and the best friend she feels she betrayed. I purchased this book as a fan of historical fiction and did appreciate the flavor of Florence the author provided. However, I didn't not feel connected to the characters. They were not un-likeable but I really found myself not caring towards the end of the book.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bezelef on December 31, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love a good book, and The Gilder fits the bill perfectly. Marina, the main character, is caught in the web of lies she has gradually created since she betrayed her best friend Sarah in Florence 16 years ago. The story moves between the past and the present, neatly intertwining the stories of Marina as a twenty-two-year-old, newly arrived in Florence to study the art of gilding, and Marina today, a successful art restorer and gilder - and mother to a 15-year-old daughter. This story of love and betrayal, and the lies people tell and the mistakes that they make, will draw you in and not let you go until you turn the last page. May this be the first of many wonderful books to come!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Samantha J on July 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
I received a copy of The Gilder in exchange for an honest review. I will be honest - at first glance, I wasn't real excited to read this book. Both the cover and the title were a bit on the boring side for me, but that's why we can't judge on image, right? I ended up really enjoying this book. The main character is Marina Nesmith, an art restorer who on the outside seems to have a pretty terrific life. But Marina has been carrying around a secret for too many years - and one that is about to catch up to her when she heads to Florence. Marina visited Florence years ago, and that is where she met Thomas and his wife Sarah. She learned her trade as a gilder, formed friendships, and was awakened to a whole new world. But her time in Florence wasn't all good. Now Marina must decide whether she will face the past and finally start revealing the truths, or continue to cower in her lies.

I daydream about visiting Florence at least twice a month, so I had a really fabulous time reading all the beautiful descriptions Kathryn Kay offered up. There was a lot of a mystery aspect which I am always a fan of, and I had a great time going on Marina's journey with her. It was a lot deeper, more complex, and simply just...different from what I was expecting - but in a good way! Sometimes the writing was a bit heavy for me, and it seemed everyone Marina met had a "cherubic" face, but otherwise I thought this was a very interesting read and one that I would recommend.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on December 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
In 1977, Marina Nesmith goes to Florence, Italy to study the art of gilding. Egotistical American photographer Thomas and his wife Sarah befriend and mentor the twenty two year old American. Marina is especially close to beloved Sarah. However, one night sends Marina with remorse and guilt fleeing back to her hometown in upstate New York.

In 1993 highly respected art restorer Marina is invited back to Florence. She loved the city and would like to return, but her one indiscretion makes her wary. At the same time the gilder considers what she should do; her fifteen years old daughter Zoe pressures her with a need know and meet her father. Marina has spent a decade and a half concealing who he is with fabrications of who sired Zoe.

This is an engaging extremely complicated relationship drama that deftly uses mostly Marina's flashbacks to tell what happened in 1977. Marina is a fascinating protagonist who keeps the story line focused in both decades. A morality tale that argues people are better off when we are honest with ourselves and those you love, fans will appreciate the profound story of the Gilder.

Harriet Klausner
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More About the Author

I was born in 1953 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the third of six children and eldest daughter of an international businessman, and homemaker. Just before my fourth birthday we moved to England where I became a proper little British girl in my grey Macintosh and black Wellington boots. Although we moved a number of times in those early years between England, Germany, and the States, I have always considered England (where my family still resides) to be my childhood home. While the frequent moves nurtured a sense of adventure and independence, the social and educational ramifications were often challenging, and to this day I'm a little wistful when I meet people who've had the experience of spending their childhood in one place.
When I was a freshman in high school, my family returned to the U.S. and settled in Wisconsin where I enjoyed the typical high school experience of academics, sports, and a little misbehaving. Following three, somewhat aimless, years at the University of Wisconsin and many courses in history and literature, I returned to Europe and settled in Florence, Italy. There, I enrolled in a course of study in antiques restoration, ultimately specializing in 15th Century inlay, and enjoyed an expat, bohemian life style. I remained in Florence for five years during which time I made an unexpected visit to a little island off Cape Cod called, Nantucket... I was captivated.
Following the birth of my daughter in Florence, my then husband and I moved to Nantucket and made it our home. Over the ensuing fifteen years I became a single parent, woodworker, basket maker, caterer, decorative painter, and antiques dealer.
At the age of forty, I resumed my studies, which is by far the best thing I've done in my adult life, and received a BA in liberal arts from Lesley College in 1996. Encouraged to pursue my writing, I eventually went on to a graduate program at Vermont College where I completed my MFA in writing in 2004. During this time I founded the Nantucket Writers Studio, where it gives me immense pleasure to lead creative writing workshops for women.

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