The Glassmaker: A Novel (Hardcover)

The Glassmaker: A Novel By Tracy Chevalier Cover Image
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A Parade and Christian Science Monitor Best Book of June

“This charming fable is at once a love story that skips through six centuries, and also a love song to the timeless craft of glassmaking. Chevalier probes the fierce rivalries and enduring loyalties of Murano's glass dynasties, capturing the roar of the furnace, the sweat on the skin, and the glittering beauty of Venetian glass.” – Geraldine Brooks, author of Horse

From the bestselling historical novelist, a rich, transporting story that follows a family of glassmakers from the height of Renaissance-era Italy to the present day.

It is 1486 and Venice is a wealthy, opulent center for trade. Orsola Rosso is the eldest daughter in a family of glassblowers on Murano, the island revered for the craft. As a woman, she is not meant to work with glass—but she has the hands for it, the heart, and a vision. When her father dies, she teaches herself to make glass beads in secret, and her work supports the Rosso family fortunes.

Skipping like a stone through the centuries, in a Venice where time moves as slowly as molten glass, we follow Orsola and her family as they live through creative triumph and heartbreaking loss, from a plague devastating Venice to Continental soldiers stripping its palazzos bare, from the domination of Murano and its maestros to the transformation of the city of trade into a city of tourists. In every era, the Rosso women ensure that their work, and their bonds, endure.

Chevalier is a master of her own craft, and The Glassmaker is as inventive as it is spellbinding: a mesmerizing portrait of a woman, a family, and a city as everlasting as their glass.

About the Author

Tracy Chevalier is the New York Times bestselling author of ten previous novels, including Girl with a Pearl Earring, which has been translated into forty-five languages and made into an Oscar-nominated film, a play, and an opera. Born and raised in Washington, DC, she lives in London with her husband.

Praise For…

A Parade Best New Book

“Travel across seven centuries with novelist Tracy Chevalier and a remarkable Glassmaker ... The Glassmaker conveys a vivid history lesson about a fascinating place and industry, animated through the lives and emotions of compelling characters.” Star Tribune

“[An] exceptional novel ... Chevalier’s descriptive prose on glassmaking artistry, together with her delightful characters, creates an entrancing tale.” Christian Science Monitor

“There is an immediate richness to the historical fiction of Tracy Chevalier, one that goes beyond carefully researched details and evocative prose, and into deep emotion. . . . The Glassmaker becomes a study not just of history, but of what endures history. That makes it a potent, bewitching bright spot in a stellar career.” Bookpage (starred review)
“Tracy Chevalier pens a novel as ambitious, audacious, and artistic as a Venetian glass goblet. Beginning in the height of the Renaissance and hopscotching with casual ease through the centuries to the modern day, she examines the ever-changing city of Venice through the eyes of Orsola Rosso, defiantly gifted daughter of a Murano glassmaking family, and how her unique gift with glass shines through time, fragile but unbreakable. The Glassmaker is a thing of beauty.” – Kate Quinn, author of The Diamond Eye

“Tracy Chevalier returns to the world of medieval craft and gives us another determined heroine—a Venetian glassmaker who penetrates the closed world of the men of Murano. Meticulously researched and evoking the beauty of the Venice lagoon, the story challenges and transports the reader through time and place.” – Philippa Gregory, author of The Other Boleyn Girl

“A richly-drawn tale about loyalty and heartbreak, as well as a love letter to the craftsmen—and women—who created exquisite treasures that endure through the ages. A stunning achievement. I couldn’t put it down.” – Fiona Davis, author of The Spectacular

“Chevalier, one of our great storytellers, brings us unexpected worlds: Venice and Murano, artisans and empresses, compelling us through six fascinating centuries, with one irresistible family, weaving stories that captivate and transport the reader.” – Amy Bloom, author of White Houses

“Spellbinding…. Chevalier at her fabulous best. A rich, vivid and gently enchanting novel.” – Elif Shafak, author of The Island of Missing Trees

“In the Venice of The Glassmaker, time moves differently, with hundreds of years passing in the blink of an eye….When one has the chance to live for centuries, love and loss seem to cut more deeply, and the winds of change never stop blowing, which means that the ground is constantly shifting beneath the feet of Chevalier's perfectly drawn characters. Inspiring, heartbreaking, and magical, The Glassmaker is an inventive and extraordinary feat and an epic for the ages.” – Kristin Harmel, author of The Paris Daughter

“A triumph… a brilliant idea carried out with confidence and brio and a deep love of an extraordinary city. The ingenuity of the time-skipping is beyond admiration.” – Philip Pullman, author of the His Dark Materials trilogy

“I lost myself in this beautiful book.” – Esther Freud, author of Hideous Kinky

“This charming fable is at once a love story that skips through six centuries, and also a love song to the timeless craft of glassmaking. Chevalier probes the fierce rivalries and enduring loyalties of Murano's glass dynasties, capturing the roar of the furnace, the sweat on the skin, and the glittering beauty of Venetian glass.” – Geraldine Brooks, author of Horse

“Impressive . . . Between fascinating descriptions of artisans at work and the glassware they create, Chevalier embeds a love story that transcends time as Orsola, across 500 years, holds on to the love she carries for a man she knew in her youth. With colorful narrative and dialogue, Chevalier lets time roll forward through independent women who are determined to shape glass into works of art and frame life paths of their own design. History flows like molten glass in this stunning novel.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“With a story of inventive and heartbreaking transformation, Tracy Chevalier has turned her poetic eye and love of meticulous research to a Muranese family saga spanning 500 years. …  A beautifully crafted novel.” Ytali

Product Details
ISBN: 9780525558279
ISBN-10: 0525558276
Publisher: Viking
Publication Date: June 18th, 2024
Pages: 416
Language: English