The Gilder

The Gilder

by Kathryn Kay
4.4 27

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The Gilder 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had not read a review or heard of this book. I was just browsing in Barnes and Noble looking for a good read. I like reading novels set in European settings...Florence caught my eye and was the hook...but got so much more from the novel. Loved it, could not put it down. Descriptions make you want to hop the next plane to Florence. As a 50-something...I found profound explainations for the vast number of emotions and trials of the believable. The character developments were meaningful and felt that each word, sentence, and description was relevant to the story and the character. Will suggest to my book club. Will generate great discussions! Hope Ms. Kay brings us more books!
dhaupt More than 1 year ago
As a young adult Marina goes to Florence to further her art of gilding, hoping to learn from a master in a place where the art was created and perfected. Living in Florence she meets and befriends Sarah and Thomas who become her foster family and yet she also fosters deeper feelings toward Sarah, feelings that are unsettling. Those feelings are abruptly forgotten about when Marina¿s confusing actions and the results of those actions send her scurrying out of Florence and away from her newfound life and friends as fast as a plane will carry her. Sixteen years later, her life built on lies, deceit and denials is starting to unravel when her daughter Zoe starts asking questions and the lies start sticking in her throat. She¿s returning to Florence to speak at a conference and while she¿s there she vows to make right what had become so wrong. In an act of life mimicking art she sees that the hurt to relationships is just as deep as the damage to a piece of artwork that needs repairing and the fix is just as fragile as the gilt she uses to finish the process. In confessing to past wrongs she is learning more about her self and perhaps opening feelings that were once locked deeply away and perhaps resolution will result in reparations. Kathryn Kay brings us a poignant and beautiful look at Florence through the eyes of someone innocent and fresh who slowly becomes cynical as a result of life. Her plot is imaginative and unique. Her narrative is a mix of the prose spoke in Italy to the slang spoke in the US with dialogue that will let you see the Arno flowing and the flowers growing on the banks, that will let you smell the cafés wares and feel the salt spray on your face and imagine the thinness of the gold gilt and the fluidity of applying it. Her characters are all memorable and some are confusing. Her protagonist Marina grows throughout the novel and yet never really matures until the end where the author literally gives her readers a front row seat of Marina learning to trust, hope and live again without the debilitating fear it used to cause. This is definitely an adult read although the adult scenes are masked enough to allow a younger audience admittance. This is more than women¿s fiction, but that¿s the best genre to place it in, it¿s a journey to Europe it¿s of life and of loss and it¿s about putting the important things up front and deal with them.
Ben_M80 More than 1 year ago
The Gilder begins as a wonderfully written and descriptive story of a young American woman living as a gilding apprentice in Florence, Italy and her close friendship with an artistic American couple. As the story matures we see the woman as a professional gilder living in upstate New York with her teenage daughter, and we experience the angst of parent-child relationships complicated by hidden truths. By the time the story ended I was so caught up with the lives of the characters I wanted the story to continue. But isn’t that how good books should end? I rate this book five stars out of five stars.
Kever1 More than 1 year ago
My favorite line, "A tourettes seizure of truth". I would read this author again, and recommend this book for visual readers. I think most readers will commiserate with and understand the heroin. The story line is evocative and paced just right, with a tail wind coming from behind giving it that extra whoosh, leaving you to resist putting it down for one minute.
riau74 More than 1 year ago
Just finished "The Gilder" by Kathryn Kay, first book I have read by her and it wont b the last. A) I couldnt put it down B) the setting for most of it was Florence Italy! Whether u have or have not been there her descriptions make you want to go and you feel like your there with the main character Marina. Takes place in the 90's when she is a young college student and they weave in the other characters so well. She knows how to tell a story, her characters r complex and you love them or hate them.You want to yell horay but also want to chastise them. She does a good job of going from the past to present as well and you dont get lost at all. Its just filled with everything. 2 thumbs up for sure, love it. and this was the book i won from my facebook bk club. This was even closer to me bc i have been to florence italy and Venice and Rome etc several times as my dad is right off the boat well in 1955
alibiW More than 1 year ago
This book makes me want to return to Florence, great read. Left me wanting more!
vickigk More than 1 year ago
Just wonderful, a story about a tangled life set right again with the added backdrop of beautiful and evocative images of Florence. Well done Ms. Kay!
PFM5 More than 1 year ago
Set in Florence, Italy in the 1990’s Ms. Kay takes the reader instantly to this city of Michelangelo. In this well crafted story of mistakes of youth and paybacks in adulthood. A childhood dream of living and working in this famous Italian city of artist; does help her develop her craft but also teaches her life lessons about relationships that takes years to resolve. The book was hard to put down but I decided to savor it and only read a chapter a day. A great read!!
Rayray77 More than 1 year ago
If you love Florence Italy, like I do, the descriptions in this book will take you there as you follow Marina, the main character on her quest for redemption. Lines between friends and lovers blurr and lies and betrayal are major themes. Can the mistakes of her youth be forgiven? Read this and take the trip and you won't regret it.
Bezelef More than 1 year ago
I love a good book, and The Gilder fits the bill perfectly. Marina, the main character, is caught in the web of lies she has gradually created since she betrayed her best friend Sarah in Florence 16 years ago. The story moves between the past and the present, neatly intertwining the stories of Marina as a twenty-two-year-old, newly arrived in Florence to study the art of gilding, and Marina today, a successful art restorer and gilder ¿ and mother to a 15-year-old daughter. This story of love and betrayal, and the lies people tell and the mistakes that they make, will draw you in and not let you go until you turn the last page. May this be the first of many wonderful books to come!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I bought this book with a Nook credit thinking I was getting a book about a gilder in Florence, Italy and her story of art, friendship, and Italy. There was no mention in any of the reviews that this was involving both same sex and opposite sex relationships. And that these relationships would be the focus of the book. Very disappointing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
RtBBlog More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by: Robin Book provided by: Publisher Review originally posted at Romancing the Book Ever have one of those moments when you think it would be easier on everyone to make up a story to glamorize your life. In this beautiful yet emotional story by Kathryn Kay about a Gilder we find that eventually the past does catch up with the present. Marina Nesmith had a knack of taking picture frames and art and doing what is called gilding to take the tarnish away and making them shine and shimmer once again. In Florence, Marina learned the craft of a gilder. It was in the 70’s and life was different. She met some Americans that had been living the bohemian lifestyle. They became friends and forged a relationship of sorts. Marina had a small fling with Thomas but really found her attracted to Sarah, which to Marina was a rather scary thing. Because of the infidelity with a married man Marina found herself pregnant. Zoe, Marina’s daughter is now 15 and wants to know about her father. What is Marina to do? All these years she has been living a lie. Marina has been telling lies to cover up the past which has now caught up to her. Marina has to make a choice now to give up the façade she has been living so that she is able to give her daughter the one thing she wants; the truth. And in order to do that Marina must face the past. So we travel back to where it all began Italy. Facing the past is never easy. I liked the concept of the story. How the secrets, lies, friendships, betrayals and choices we make always have a way of coming back to force us to be truthful with ourselves. We all know that with the choices that we make, they have a way of affecting not only our lives but those around us also. As Marina finds sometimes it really is simple. We sometimes just want someone to share it all with. Someone to share life with, the good and bad… It can be as simple as finding the confidence to tell the truth about the past. In this case your daughter about her father. I found this to be an eye opening story that hit some spots in my own life. Ms. Kay brought out the vulnerability of strong women. She showed that friendships are complex and that families protect. I especially loved the display of forgiveness within the family it was sweet and tender, showing that healing is possible. Ms. Kay has a strong sense of descriptive prowess that whether you have been to Italy or not makes you wants to go. There was a sympathetic realism to the story with a little bit a cluelessness which helped in making it more real. A feel good story that shows how choices we make affects everyone and not just us. Makes you think.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading The Gilder. If you love Italy and have been to Florence, the author brings it all back to you. The main character was young and innocent and taken advantage of by the husband and wife. This would be a good book for book clubs.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Captivating reading! Can't wait to go back to Florence on a "The Gilder" book tour.
SGL1 More than 1 year ago
This book totally transported me back to Florence and into the intriguing lives of the characters. I am hoping there will be a second book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I expected to like this book because it is about art and takes place partly in Italy, but the relationships seemed uncomfortable and superficial. I thought maybe the lack of depth might have been a clever way of slowly revealing some mystery, by the author. But as mysteries were illuminated, it still wasn't clear what motivated the characters' despicable behavior. Nor was I drawn to identify with anyone's feelings either. I love to read and didn't even finish this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just loved the story! While traveling on a train, i read the final chapters and a darling gentleman askef if he could help because i was crying - i told him that i was just enjoying a fabulous novel - A great read ant time any place
sfc95 More than 1 year ago
A lovely, almost poetic telling of a woman relearning herself, remembering what was and beginning to look to what will be. The Italian locale along with what feels like "regular" life dilemmas add to this must read book of finding one's way when the path has not always been smooth.
HScott More than 1 year ago
Read it, loved it. Thanks for the trip to Florence.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
jbarr5 More than 1 year ago
The Gilder by Kathryn Kay craftsman who works with gold and silver to artistically cover an object as in the gold leaf process. This book is about such a gilder in Florence. She left the US to go study abroad and sinks herself in deep in Florence. She has studied the museums, cathedrals, etc and runs into a photographer and his wife and meets up with them often. They help her not only get an apartment but a job in the field so she can learn. She does a lot of different jobs also and loves where she lives and where she is learning the trade. Goes from season to season and all the changes that take place in her work and in her life. The cover captured my attention first: flower covered vines attached to the outside of a house. Shuttered windows in red, just very striking. Title also grabbed my attention as I've always wondered if i could ever be a gilder. I know I have the patience for it and some of my work alongside a printer is some of the same tedious work, in a way. Also love the setting of Florence, love that a book can describe a place so in detail I feel as if I am there also. The book goes from one time frame to another. First is when Marina is actually in Florence, learning the gild process. The other is when her daughter is growing up, age 15 and is wondering who her father is. What her mom has told her previously just isn't making it. She wants to go to Florence and see the places her mom has always talked about. Like physical cover of this book also as it has flaps on front (telling about the story) and back (about the author) sides where you can take them and use them as a book marker.
AnnO More than 1 year ago
Kathryn Kay has written a masterpiece!! What a compelling, complex, emotional page turner, set in a magnificent city filled with local color, history and intriguing personal relationships. Add the heroine, Marina's, relationship with her now 15 year old daughter, and the opportunity for life lessons--including the potential long term fallout for altering the truth, and it's nearly impossible to put The Guilder down. I hope this will be the first of many from this terrific new author. It's a PERFECT book club read!