Christie Stratos's Reviews > The Miniaturist

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton
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really liked it
bookshelves: read-as-an-audio-book, do-not-own-it

*This book was supplied to me by This review was originally published on ABR's website.*

The Miniaturist is the first book ever to keep me guessing almost 100% of the time. I literally had no idea where it was going and absolutely had to continue listening just to find out. Part of this is due to the fact that the storyline is very unpredictable, although it doesn’t seem like it will be when the book first starts out. Not only is it unpredictable in terms of what will happen next but also where the book is going overall. If that’s not done properly, this can be very disconcerting and annoying because the reader can feel lost, but it was done in a way that made me love the book and respect the author.

There are many subplots to this book, some more prevalent than others. The intricacies are part of what keeps the reader guessing, but also part of what makes this book both fascinating and realistic; nothing ever affects just one person. I also really appreciated how well the author brought the reader along for the journey with the main character, Nella. It felt as if we grew with her, as if the secrets she discovered were secrets we discovered ourselves. The effect of all this is that not only do we feel Nella has done a lot of growing and maturing by the end of the book, but we also feel we have grown with her. That is something special in a book.

The Miniaturist doesn’t have a perfect rating for me because (1) there were a couple of details that suspended belief a bit but not overwhelmingly so, and (2) there was a part about 3/4 through the book where the author seemed like she was going to turn everything right on its back and shock the reader, but instead she just opted out of it, which made the direction it ended up taking seem slightly lame, as if we were gypped out of a mind-bending read and given something slightly easier. Had that not happened, I would not have been disappointed, so it was an unfortunate choice in the writing.

The narrator, Davina Porter, is one of my all-time favorite audiobook narrators, and she doesn’t disappoint. Her acting is superb, her voices varied and appropriate to the personality of each character, and pronunciation always understandable. I can never get over how listening to a book she narrates is like watching a movie; she really acts all the emotions out, she doesn’t just read them. It’s more of an experience than just a book.

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Reading Progress

January 19, 2015 – Started Reading
January 19, 2015 – Shelved
January 19, 2015 – Shelved as: read-as-an-audio-book
January 19, 2015 – Shelved as: do-not-own-it
January 19, 2015 –
page 7
January 20, 2015 –
January 22, 2015 –
36.0% "This book has much more depth than expected. It has taken me by surprise several times, and I still have no idea where it's going. So far, I'm really impressed."
January 24, 2015 –
45.0% "I really have no idea where this is going and I love it! It's nice, for once, to really not be able to predict what's going to happen in any way, shape, or form."
January 26, 2015 –
January 30, 2015 –
February 3, 2015 – Finished Reading

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