Sunday, 26 June 2011

The Glassblower of Murano

My 9th book in the 100+ Reading Challenge

The Glassblower of Murano
by Marina Fiorato

Outer back cover: Venice, 1681.
Glassblowing is the lifeblood of the Republic and Venetian mirrors are more precious than gold. Jealously guarder by the murderous Council of Ten, the glassblowers of Murano are virtually imprisoned on their island in the lagoon.
But the greatest artist of their number, Corradino Manin, [deleted]
Centuries later his descendant, Nora Manin, escapes an unhappy life in London, determined to apprentice as a glassblower in the city of her ancestors. Passionate and gifted, her famous family name places her in danger within the ancient foundries when timeless rivalries rise to the surface. As she finds new life and love in Venice, Nora's fate becomes inextricably linked with that of Corradino [deleted]

As you can see I have deleted some of what it said on the back of the book. I did not read the back until after I had read the book and was going to write this, and I'm glad, because it would have ruined the book for me. It gave away most of the ending, so I decided to delete it, so as not to ruin too much of the book for you. If you want to read it anyway I'm sure you can find it somewhere on the internet, or you could just get the book.

The book switches between Corradino's life during the Renaissance and Nora's in the present day. The parts about Corradino was written so well that I thought he might have been a real person, I actually looked him up on the internet, but he's just a character Fiorato has made up.

Corradino's first couple of chapters were a little confusing, but when I got into the story it was really exciting. There is murder, corruption, a secret daughter and amazing description of glassblowing, and also of Venice. Nora's chapters are also very exciting as she tries to find out what really happened to her ancestor, while finding some very confusing love, and getting into her own problems.

I have never been to Venice and so a lot of the places the book wrote about was lost on me, but it did make me want to go there. Not that I didn't want to go before, but earlier I just wanted to go because of all the hype about the canals and all that, but after reading this book I want to go because of... not how it's described, but the way it's described. With so much love, with the eyes of someone that hasn't just been there on holiday but has lived there.

My favorite part of the book was the first encounters between Nora and Alessandro. I had butterflies in my belly. But after the first meetings it got confusing, and I actually wasn't sure how it would end which just made the book more interesting to read.

My favorite character in the book was actually Aldo Savini, who only has a very small part in the book. He's a librarian and I just loved reading his thoughts about Nora. He was a very cute character, but I'm also glad his role wasn't bigger.

1 comment:

....Petty Witter said...

Having brought back several small piece of Murano glass from our visit to Venice I would love to read this book.

Most bloggers are soooo careful to leave out spoilers - to think that the blurb on the back of a book gave away the ending like this, what can I say apart for thanks for leaving that bit out.


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