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I Am Rembrandt's Daughterby Lynn Cullen
Synopses & Reviews
With her mother dead of the plague and her brother newly married, Cornelia van Rijn finds herself without a friend or confidante—except her difficult father. Out of favor with Amsterdams elite, the once revered Rembrandt van Rijn is now teetering on the brink of madness. Cornelia alone must care for him, though she is haunted by secrets and scandal of her own. Her only happiness comes in a growing romance with Carel, the son of a wealthy shipping magnate, whose passion for art stirs her. And then there is Neel, her fathers last remaining pupil, a darkly brooding young man whose steadfast devotion to Rembrandt both baffles and touches her.
Based on real characters and filled with family dramas and a love triangle that would make Jane Austen proud, I Am Rembrandts Daughter is a powerful account of a young womans struggle to come of age within the shadow of one of the worlds most brilliant and complicated artists.
"'This sensitively sketched first novel paints a compelling portrait of 14-year-old narrator Cornelia and her conflicted relationship with her father, the famous painter Rembrandt. Cullen ably conjures the anxiety and loneliness of Cornelia's position once her beloved older brother marries and leaves her to care for her uncompromising, half-mad father, whose eccentricities (including a belief that God tells him what to paint) bar them from polite society and whose avant-garde painting style and unpredictable temperament keep patrons away and relegate them to near poverty ('The man's nerve is only exceeded by his madness,' a frustrated Cornelia vents). The highly atmospheric Dutch setting along the canals and constant threat of contagion from plague outbreaks heighten the tension, but a romantic triangle between Cornelia, her suitor Carel (an apprentice and heir to a shipping fortune) and her father's student Neel provides most of the drama here. Somewhat uneven chapters centered around the paintings focus on the circumstances surrounding the creation of individual works and point toward a secret involving Cornelia's deceased mother and why Rembrandt never married her. Readers may wish that the buildup to Cornelia's own artistic impulses yielded more, but they will cheer for this colorful cast, especially the likable heroine and the understanding and peace she crafts with her father. Ages 12-up. (June)' Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Based on historical fact, this moving story--an ALA Best Book for Young Adults--is a powerful account of a young woman's struggle to come of age within the shadow of one of the world's most brilliant and complicated artists.
Based on historical fact and filled with family dramas and a love triangle that would make Jane Austen proud, this moving story is a powerful account of a young womans struggle to come of age within the shadow of one of the worlds most brilliant and complicated artists.
About the Author
LYNN CULLEN is the author of several novels and picture books, including Moi and Marie Antoinette. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.
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