- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Books; Reprint edition (December 28, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0452285453
- ISBN-13: 978-0452285453
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 7.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 221 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #171,761 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Lady and the Unicorn: A Novel Paperback – December 28, 2004
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"Tracy Chevalier has invented another juicy backstory to a great work of art…a lively, sexy, and thoroughly entertaining novel." —Entertainment Weekly
"Subtly rendered, surprisingly complex characters…a novel notable for its human warmth." —The New York Times Book Review
"Tracy Chevalier has spun a story as richly detailed as the medieval tapestries on which it’s based…a fascinating novel." —Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"Tracy Chevalier's approach to fiction is so methodical that she threatens to turn writing about art into science." —The New York Times
About the Author
"I was born and grew up in Washington, DC. After getting a BA in English from Oberlin College (Ohio), I moved to London, England in 1984. I intended to stay 6 months; I’m still here.
"As a kid I’d often said I wanted to be a writer because I loved books and wanted to be associated with them. I wrote the odd story in high school, but it was only in my twenties that I started writing ‘real’ stories, at night and on weekends. Sometimes I wrote a story in a couple evenings; other times it took me a whole year to complete one.
"Once I took a night class in creative writing, and a story I’d written for it was published in a London-based magazine called Fiction. I was thrilled, even though the magazine folded 4 months later.
I worked as a reference book editor for several years until 1993 when I left my job and did a year-long MA in creative writing at the University of East Anglia in Norwich (England). My tutors were the English novelists Malcolm Bradbury and Rose Tremain. For the first time in my life I was expected to write every day, and I found I liked it. I also finally had an idea I considered ‘big’ enough to fill a novel. I began The Virgin Blue during that year, and continued it once the course was over, juggling writing with freelance editing.
"An agent is essential to getting published. I found my agent Jonny Geller through dumb luck and good timing. A friend from the MA course had just signed on with him and I sent my manuscript of The Virgin Blue mentioning my friend’s name. Jonny was just starting as an agent and needed me as much as I needed him. Since then he’s become a highly respected agent in the UK and I’ve gone along for the ride."
Tracy Chevalier is the New York Times bestselling author of six previous novels, including Girl with a Pearl Earring, which has been translated into thirty-nine languages and made into an Oscar-nominated film. Her latest novel is The Last Runaway. Born and raised in Washington, D.C., she lives in London with her husband and son.
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From Nicholas' peccadillos to his realization that women are more than sexual objects, to the surprising ending of the novel, each character is essential to the story, and each character grows in his or her own way just as the tapestries grow to completion. The research that must have gone on to make this novel the believable story that unfolds is to be applauded. Wonderful book! I couldn't put it down, and now I must wait for the next Chevalier novel.
This is an interesting story, but I wasn't nearly as wrapped up in it as I was with "Girl With a Pearl Earring." The characters are all rather forgettable and the main protagonist is very unlikeable, so it was difficult to really get excited about the story. If readers pick up "The Lady and the Unicorn" with the expectation that it will be as good as other Chevalier books they've read, then they'll be in for a disappointment.
I need to comment on the physical attributes of the book itself. The hardcover edition of "The Lady and the Unicorn" is a beautiful book to LOOK AT. When you remove the book jacket, you'll discover that the glossy cover of the book depicts several scenes from the actual Lady and the Unicorn tapestries that are currently on display in a Paris museum. The paper also has an old-fashioned quality to it, making this a beautiful book to add to your collection. The best thing about the book is its actual design...I wish I could say more about the story itself!
Most recent customer reviews
This was a real page turner for me.