By: Guinevere Glasford
Location: FIC GLA
Genre: Historical Fiction
I loved the Miniaturist by Jessie Burton set in Amsterdam in the 17th century, so this book was a buy for me based on that book. It may also have something to do with my ridiculous attraction to The Girl in the Pearl Earring. I have seen that painting, the real one, she looks at you from EVERY angle- it is stunning!
This book was a finalist for the Costa Book Award and the Times called it "Excellent"
The Words in My Hand
is the reimagined true story of Helena Jans, a Dutch maid in
17th-century Amsterdam, who works for Mr Sergeant the English
bookseller. When a mysterious and reclusive lodger arrives - the
Monsieur - Mr Sergeant insists everything must be just so. It transpires
that the Monsieur is René Descartes.
This is Helena's story: the
woman in front of Descartes, a young woman who yearns for knowledge, who
wants to write so badly she makes ink from beetroot and writes in
secret on her skin - only to be held back by her position in society.
together the story of Descartes' quest for reason with Helena's
struggle for literacy, their worlds overlap as their feelings deepen;
yet remain sharply divided. For all Descartes' learning, it is Helena he
seeks out as she reveals the surprise in the everyday world that
When reputation is everything and with so much to
lose, some truths must remain hidden. Helena and Descartes face a
terrible tragedy and ultimately have to decide if their love is possible