Where I Got It: The Library
Who I Recommend This To: If you want a bit of fictionalized art history in bite-sized pieces, check this out.
Publisher: Scribner (2012)
Length: 337 pages
Each chapter within this book is it’s own contained story, starting with an art piece created in 1333 in Italy going forward to a 2008 photograph and concluding with a completely fictional chapter set in 2060. As the title implies, each art piece captures an image of a female reading. I found I enjoyed Katie Ward‘s earliest chapters the most in this book, yet once we left the distant past to times that encompassed technology that I was familiar with, my attention drifted a bit. The final chapter, a futuristic piece, kind of tied the book together.
The earlier chapters gave me pleasure in living the times, people, morals, and atmosphere of those who created the art featured. I loved traveling from Italy, England, Netherlands. The imagery from each chapter stayed with me clearer than individual characters. I don’t know why, but this book lacked punctuation designating who and when someone was talking, so the people in each chapter blurred together for me. Once I stopped rereading multiple paragraphs to keep track of who was speaking when, the book picked up.
What I Liked: The atmosphere for each chapter was distinct; the whole concept of moving through time via art pieces of the literate female.
What I Disliked: Lack of punctuation made it difficult to keep characters distinct; sentence fragments were sometimes too vague for me to figure out and by the end of the book, I was not interested in taking the time to muddle through them.