Literary Listings: 5 Art Historical Novels For Bookish Painting-Enthusiasts

Books and painting’s aren’t that different. Both are mediums for expression, and sources of knowledge. In that we find books about paintings or painters to be fascinating! It’s like telling a story about a story. Brilliant. We’ve compiled 5 books about painters and paintings that will surely take you to another time, the Renaissance maybe?

5 Art Historical Novels For Bookish Painting-Enthusiasts:

The Creation Of Eve by Lynn Cullen

There were women artists in the renaissance, didn’t you know?

According to Cullen’s The Creation Of Eve there was one in particular, Sofonisba Anguissola. We follow Anguissola as she attempts to break the patriarchal control of the renaissance whilst achieving her true potential without dooming herself or her family to scandal. A wonderful tale. Birth Of Venus by Sarah Dunant

Art and scandal are artfully interwoven in this rich tale set in Florence’s Renaissance. We meet the famous Medici’s and the main protagonist, Alessandra Cecchi. Cecchi is the daughter of a rich Florentinian who falls in love with a traveling artist. Much drama ensues, of course.

Girl With A Pearl Earring by Tracey Chevalier

Probably one of the most famous and popular art historical novels, Chevalier weaves a scintillating story about Griet and the drama that she unintentionally causes. Hired by Vermeer as a servant, Griet is quickly noticed by her master and asked to modell for him. Lets just say his pregnant wife did not take it well.

Chevalier creates a truly imaginative tale, all based on a single painting.

Art Forger B. A. Shapiro

It is the stuff of legend in 1990 paintings worth over $500 million are stolen from a museum in Boston. Art student, Claire Roth, makes her living forging famous paintings until one of the famous stolen paintings lands on her doorstep.

Shapiro speaks frankly and honestly on the harshness and deceit found in the cut throat contemporary art world., Mona Lisa Jeanne Kalogridis

“My name is Lisa di Antonio Gherardini Giocondo, though to acquaintances, I am known simply as Madonna Lisa.  My story begins not with my birth but a murder, committed the year before I was born…”

With an opening like that, how can you not be drawn in? The world has marveled and wondered about the enigmatic model in DaVinci’s Mona Lisa. Kalogridis creates her own Mona Lisa, a breathtakingly complex woman stuck in a fraught world.


About Claire (BWB)

It's Claire (aka Quirky) from Bitches With Books, an online book blog that serves up a healthy dose of book reviews, lists + literary madness.
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One Response to Literary Listings: 5 Art Historical Novels For Bookish Painting-Enthusiasts

  1. Rolanda says:

    Great post, really enjoyed it!
    — Rolanda

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