The Lady and the Unicorn is inspired by six famous mediaeval tapestries. Now over 500 years old, these tapestries hang in the Musée National du Moyen Age in Paris.
Very little is known about their origins or their meaning. We do know that each tapestry depicts a woman and a unicorn, and five symbolize one of the senses: sight, sound, smell, touch and taste. And we know that they were woven for an important family sometime in the late 15th century in Flanders.
The Lady and the Unicorn imagines the lives of the people behind these tapestries: the artists and weavers who created them, and the noble family who commissioned them. Chevalier delves into each person’s thoughts and desires, creating characters that feel very much like real people. Her depiction of a medieval weaving workshop is fascinating. Craftspeople will appreciate every detail about the work that went into these tapestries. The story is fast-paced, surprising, and more than a little sexy, which you might not have expected from a novel about medieval weavers!
How to find it:
You can find The Lady and the Unicorn at bookstores or at your local library. It’s also available for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, and as an Overdrive library ebook (in some regions). It’s also available as an audible.com audiobook. You can read the first chapter for free on the author’s website.
We’ll discuss the book on this blog, six weeks from now, on June 23rd. Let people know you’re reading along with the hashtag #ColetteBookClub. Send any comments or recommendations to firstname.lastname@example.org
June 23: The End of Fashion: How Marketing Changed the Clothing Business Forever by Terri Agins. How did fashion change from an elitist business tightly controlled by French designers to the mainstream market it is today? Agins explains in a book that won’t bore you, even if you’re the kind of person who would fall asleep in a business course.
August 4: The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit by JJ Lee. When journalist and amateur tailor JJ Lee decides to re-makes his late father’s suit, he starts a journey into his family’s past, the history of suits, and the meaning of masculinity.