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This title in other editions

Jewels: A Secret History

by

Jewels: A Secret History Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:


Throughout history, precious stones have inspired passions and poetry, quests and curses, sacred writings and unsacred actions. In this scintillating book, journalist Victoria Finlay embarks on her own globe-circling search for the real stories behind some of the gems we prize most. Blending adventure travel, geology, exciting new research, and her own irresistible charm, Finlay has fashioned a treasure hunt for some of the most valuable, glamorous, and mysterious substances on earth.

With the same intense curiosity and narrative flair she displayed in her widely-praised book Color, Finlay journeys from the underground opal churches of outback Australia to the once pearl-rich rivers of Scotland; from the peridot mines on an Apache reservation in Arizona to the remote ruby mines in the mountains of northern Burma. She risks confronting scorpions to crawl through Cleopatra’ s long-deserted emerald mines, tries her hand at gem cutting in the dusty Sri Lankan city where Marco Polo bartered for sapphires, and investigates a rumor that fifty years ago most of the world’s amber was mined by prisoners in a Soviet gulag.

Jewels is a unique and often exhilarating voyage through history, across cultures, deep into the earth’ s mantle, and up to the glittering heights of fame, power, and wealth. From the fabled curse of the Hope Diamond, to the disturbing truths about how pearls are cultured, to the peasants who were once executed for carrying amber to the centuries-old quest by magicians and scientists to make a perfect diamond, Jewels tells dazzling stories with a wonderment and brilliance truly worthy of its subjects.

Synopsis:

In "Jewels," journalist Victoria Finlay demonstrates the power of gemstones via fascinating tales of money, intrigue, and ingenuity. From amethyst to sapphire, from 17th-century France to 21st-century Hong Kong, Finlay leaves no facet unpolished. 8-page color insert.

About the Author

Victoria Finlay studied social anthropology at the University of St. Andrews and the College of William & Mary, Virginia, before working for Reuters in London and Scandinavia. She spent twelve years as a journalist in Hong Kong, five of them as arts editor of The South China Morning Post, where she also presented a weekly radio program. She now lives in Somerset in southwest England, and divides her time between researching her next book and working for an international environmental charity, www.arcworld.org. Jewels is her third book.

From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780345466952
Author:
Finlay, Victoria
Publisher:
Random House Trade
Subject:
Fashion
Subject:
Jewelry
Subject:
World - General
Subject:
World
Subject:
World History-General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
August 2007
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
8 PP COLOR PHOTOS; B/W ILLUS- TRATIONS T
Pages:
496
Dimensions:
8.23x5.57x1.06 in. .97 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Antiques » Jewelry and Fashion
Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Crafts » Gems
Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Crafts » Jewelry » Collecting
Science and Mathematics » Geology » Rocks and Minerals

Jewels: A Secret History New Trade Paper
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Product details 496 pages Random House Trade - English 9780345466952 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In "Jewels," journalist Victoria Finlay demonstrates the power of gemstones via fascinating tales of money, intrigue, and ingenuity. From amethyst to sapphire, from 17th-century France to 21st-century Hong Kong, Finlay leaves no facet unpolished. 8-page color insert.
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