Monday, January 26, 2009

I Am Rembrandt's Daughter by Lynn Cullen

Cornelia, the daughter of the esteemed painter Rembrandt van Rijn, feels lost and alone. Her mother dead from the plague and her brother recently married, Cornelia has no one to turn to with the exception of her father Rembrandt, who is teetering on the brink of madness. Once a great painter, his style has become unpopular with the elite of Amsterdam, and now he and Cornelia are living on the edge of poverty. To forget her problems, Cornelia begins a relationship with Carel, the son of a wealthy shipping magnate. But there's also Neel, her father's last remaining student, whose devotion to Rembrandt surprises Cornelia. This is the story of a girl growing up in the shadow of one of the world's most brillaint artists.

Hm, what to say about this book? I have to admit that I was disappointed with it. For some reason, I thought this book was going to be really good, and it wasn't. It wasn't bad, just not excellent. If you've ever read Girl With a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier, this book is very similar. I wrote a literary criticism on that book last year, which is another story for another day. But anyway, both protagonists live in the home of a famous artist (in Pearl Earring, Griet lives with Vermeer), they live in Amsterdam around the same time period, both have a love interest, etc. Oh and for the love interest/triangle that all the starred reviews mentioned, it's practically non-existent. I understand that Cornelia is fourteen years old, but she had two boys fawning over her and they didn't interact like at all. I didn't understand why the boys actually liked her, so the "romance" was unbelievable. The historial aspects of this book seemed pretty accurate, which is always good to see. There was also a surprise ending that I guessed half-way through the book. I know it sounds like I didn't like this book, but it wasn't that bad. All I'm trying to say is I Am Rembrandt's Daughter could have been a lot better.

7 out of 10.


Ink Mage said...

Very much agreed on this one.

TruBlu93 said...

you've been tagged!!