LATEST DISCOUNTS & SALES: PROMOTIONS

Close Notification

Your cart does not contain any items

The Naturalist of Amsterdam

Melissa Ashley

$34.99

Hardback

In stock
Ready to ship

QTY:

English
Affirm Press
10 October 2023

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Dorothea’s mother is the renowned early 18th century illustrator-naturalist, Maria Sibylla Merian, and Dorothea has always been a part of the family business. When Maria decides to travel to Suriname to record the insects and plants, Dorothea goes too, despite longing for independence and a home of her own. The trip will change their lives and fortunes… Another well-researched imagining of the life of a real woman, this is a colourful and engaging novel from the author of The Birdman’s Wife. Lindy


At the turn of the 18th century, Amsterdam is at the centre of an intellectual revolution, with artists and scientists racing to record the wonders of the natural world. Of all the brilliant naturalists in Europe, Maria Sibylla Merian is one of its brightest stars.

For as long as she can remember, Dorothea Graff's life has been lived in service to her mother, Maria: from collecting insects to colouring illustrations for Maria's world-famous publications. While Dorothea longs for a life that is truly her own, she constantly finds herself drawn back into her mother's world - and shadow. When Maria becomes entranced by the plant and insect life of Suriname, she is determined to record it for herself. At just twenty years old, Dorothea decides to join her on this once-in-a-lifetime journey. All the family's savings are ploughed into the dangerous expedition, but greatness is never achieved without sacrifice.

The Metamorphosis of the Insects of Suriname will be Maria's masterpiece, but ensuring its legacy - and her own survival - will become her daughter's burden. When offered a chance of happiness, will Dorothea have the courage to take it, and risk everything her mother built? 


From the jungles of South America to the bustling artists' studios of Amsterdam, Melissa Ashley charts an incredible period of discovery. With stunning lyricism and immaculate research, The Naturalist of Amsterdam gives voice to the long-ignored women who shaped our understanding of the natural world - both the artists and those who made their work possible.


By:  
Imprint:   Affirm Press
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm, 
Weight:   657g
ISBN:   9781922863980
ISBN 10:   192286398X
Pages:   400
Publication Date:  
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Melissa Ashley is the author of historical fiction novels The Bee and the Orange Tree and The Birdman's Wife, which won the Queensland Literary Awards Fiction prize and the ABA Booksellers Choice Award. She has published a collection of poetry, The Hospital for Dolls, as well as poems, short stories, essays and academic articles. Melissa teaches writing workshops in educational and private settings and is passionate about uncovering historical women's forgotten lives, particularly in science. She lives in Brisbane with her family.

Reviews for The Naturalist of Amsterdam

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Dorothea’s mother is the renowned early 18th century illustrator-naturalist, Maria Sibylla Merian, and Dorothea has always been a part of the family business. When Maria decides to travel to Suriname to record the insects and plants, Dorothea goes too, despite longing for independence and a home of her own. The trip will change their lives and fortunes… Another well-researched imagining of the life of a real woman, this is a colourful and engaging novel from the author of The Birdman’s Wife. Lindy



See Also