Moggach, Deborah "Tulip Fever" - 1999
Amsterdam, 1630. Wealthy merchants. Famous painters. Love and Betrayal. Rise and Fall. A lot of subjects in a book that really has only one major topic: Tulips and what it meant to the people of the 17th century in Holland and Flanders. Some bulbs would yield the price of a house in the most expensive quarter of Amsterdam.
One of the novels most book club members really loved, it is very interesting both from the historic point of view as well as the story itself.
I read some other books in addition to this:
"The Tulip" by Anna Pavord
"Tulipomania: The Story of the World's Most Coveted Flower and the Extraordinary Passions It Aroused" by Mike Dash
Both of them gave a big insight into the craze that was a reason for this book.
Nevertheless, I would have enjoyed this novel without the historical background, I liked the way the author described the characters and everything else. I haven't read anything else by Debborah Moggach. Yet.
We discussed this in our book club in November 2007.
From the back cover: "Amsterdam in the 1630's. Sitting for a portrait is Sophia Sandvoort and her elderly husband Cornelis. They are surrounded by objects showing her husband's piety, as well as a tulip. Cornelis has made money from the speculation on this exotic flower and its bulbs. But as the painter, Jan van Loos, starts to capture Sophia on his canvas, so a slow passion begins to burn..."