- Explore more great deals on thousands of titles in our Deals in Books store.
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 email address or mobile phone number.
The Turquoise Ring Hardcover – Bargain Price, May 3, 2005
Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed
Special Offers and Product Promotions
About the Author
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
A young Spanish Jew from Toledo, Shiloh ben Gozan, flees Spain and the Inquisition in 1568, carrying his infant daughter, Jessica, with him. His beloved wife Leah was brutally tortured and murdered because she refused to renounce her Jewish faith before the Holy Brotherhood. The only possession Shiloh carries with him, besides some food and goat's milk for the baby, is a turquoise ring his wife had given him upon their betrothal. He travels to Venice to live openly as a Jew and to raise Jessica. However, conditions aren't much better for his people in this new home. They are forced to live in a small ghetto, and wear badges and other identifying symbols of their religion when they leave the restricted area. Although, Venice's economy and trade flourish with the influx of Jewish refugees from Spain, they are still forbidden to own land, and the only work available to them is through usury. In Venice Shiloh's precious turquoise ring is stolen and passes through many hands, effecting all who own it.
The narrative begins with Elizabeta Santa Leocadia de la Cerda's story.Read more ›
"The Merchant Of Venice" is arguably Shakespeare's most controversial and lyrical work. The 16th century tale of vengeance and religious intolerance in Venice among rival merchants was recently made into a film, and now comes to us reinvented as a novel titled The Turquoise Ring by Shakespearean scholar and author, Grace Tiffany ("My Father had a Daughter" and "Will.")
Told from the viewpoint of five women - three of whom are featured in the original play - this entertaining, and at times transcendent, novel employs the symbol of a turquoise ring made in Toledo to weave together the stories of the brave and doomed Rachel, her foolish daughter Jessica, the clever courtesan Nerrisa, the eccentric heiress Portia, and her clairvoyant Moorish servant, Xanthe. The middle three women will be familiar to Shakespeare aficionados, though such knowledge is not necessary in order to enjoy Tiffany's feminist construction of the Renaissance woman's plight, as well as her ode to the revered master playwright's talent for finely honed characterization and rambunctious dialogue. Though the novel does offer up the now-infamous revenge of the Jewish money lender Shylock (here, recast as Shiloh, who flees the Spanish Inquisition and martyrdom of his beloved wife, only to find himself captive to Venetian hypocrisy and the betrayal of his own daughter) it does not overshadow the plot - a refreshing and intelligent choice, which allows Tiffany to frame her overall narrative instead with a haunting tale of lost love and discerning exile. While Jessica, Nerrisa, and Portia give us a diverse, sometimes amusing, but always sympathetic depiction of how women sought survival in an often callous age, it is Rachel's poetic start and Xanthe's sage ending that truly elevate this daring, if uneven, interpretation of a classic stage tragedy.
It is a terrible pity that this book doesn't even seem to be in print any more. This deserves to be up there with the best of contemporary historical fiction.
Grace Tiffany is an English lit professor who's written several books of Shakespeare-themed fiction: My Father Had A Daughter, which features Shakespeare's daughter Judith as a main character, Will, a biographical novel on the Master himself, Ariel, a young adult re-imagining of The Tempest, and this, a reinterpretation of The Merchant of Venice, and my particular favorite of her books.
Professor Tiffany takes the smallest of moments from the original play and transforms them into whole backstories. The novel itself is inspired by Shylock's line in the play, "It was my turquoise (ring), I had it of Leah (Shylock's late wife) when I was a bachelor."
The novel is presented from the point of view of four women. First, there is Leah, Shylock's wife (in this version, Shylock's real name is Shiloh Ben Gozan). Leah was born Elizabeta de la Cerda in Spain at the time of the Inquisition; her mother was a converted Jew herself who, repenting her conversion and her marriage to a dissolute man, gave her daughter the secret Jewish name of Leah. Leah re-discovers her Jewish faith and renounces her old life to marry Shiloh ben Gozan, only to fall victim to the Inquisition. Unlike her mother, she will not betray herself even in the face of horrific torture, and dies in torture-induced childbirth.
Shiloh's daughter Jessica comes of age in Venice, where her father fled to in escaping the Inquisition.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Insightful. Addresses unanswered questions regarding Shakespeare's story.Published 13 months ago by Amazon Customer
Won't buy anymore like this, very boring!!
Did not hold my attention at all!
Will definately stir clear of this authors books.
I really enjoyed this book. It's a fast read, but interesting. I would recommend it.Published on October 27, 2007 by J. Corwin
In 16th century Venice, the Jews escape the harsh dictums of the Spanish Inquisition, fleeing their homes in Toledo for the security of more distant lands, free from torture and... Read morePublished on June 10, 2005 by Luan Gaines
This book is a treasure--and not for the reasons I expected when I picked it up. As other reviewers have noted, it is indeed an expert elaboration of the structure and spirit of... Read morePublished on May 23, 2005 by fieldsofgrain27