A Unicorn Sighting

unicorn.JPGThis time of the year I am always looking for cheap gifts. Wait. I should probably rephrase that. This time of the year I am always looking for great gifts that don’t cost much. Yes, indeed, that is a better way to put it (especially if you’re a person who might receive a gift from me).

At River City Books, regular customers know, they offer discounts every day of the week. For example, poking around the tables near the front door I spotted The Lady and the Unicorn for just $4.98 and that’s pretty hard to believe. About this beautiful, timeless, and intriguing novel, Entertainment Weekly says: “Tracy Chevalier has invented another juicy backstory to a great work of art … a lively, sexy, and thoroughly entertaining novel.”

Not bad, eh? For those who wish to know more about “The Lady and the Unicorn” (written by the author of the Girl with the Peal Earning) here’s a book description:

A tour de force of history and imagination, “The Lady and the Unicorn” is Tracy Chevalier’s answer to the mystery behind one of the art world’s great masterpieces — a set of bewitching medieval tapestries that hangs today in the Cluny Museum in Paris. They appear to portray the seduction of a unicorn, but the story behind their making is unknown — until now.

Paris, 1490. A shrewd French nobleman commissions six lavish tapestries celebrating his rising status at Court. He hires the charismatic, arrogant, sublimely talented Nicolas des Innocents to design them. Nicolas creates havoc among the women in the house — mother and daughter, servant, and lady-in-waiting — before taking his designs north to the Brussels workshop where the tapestries are to be woven. There, master weaver Georges de la Chapelle risks everything he has to finish the tapestries — his finest, most intricate work—on time for his exacting French client. The results change all their lives—lives that have been captured in the tapestries, for those who know where to look.

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