Peter Byerly is a shy antiquarian book scholar. At college he spends most of his time in the special collections room, until he falls in love and marries Amanda a descendant the college’s founders. After Amanda dies, Peter goes to England to grieve. While examining a book on Shakespeare forgeries, he finds a Victorian era watercolor portrait that bears an uncanny resemblance to Amanda. He becomes obsessed with finding who she is and who painted her. The mystery deepens when he acquires a rare book that was either annotated by Shakespeare or an excellent forgery.
APPEAL: The story has various timelines: 1995, the 1980’s, 16th century and 19th century England. As these threads are untangled, the mystery of a 16th century book and the portrait are resolved. There’s mystery, murder, romance and more.
NOTES (language, violence, sex, humor, satire):
Geraldine Brooks' People of the Book, Susan Vreeland's Girl in Hyacinth Blue
DATE/STAFF: 8/13/2013 / AP