Thursday, September 17, 2015

[Review] Under the Egg by Laura Marx Fitzgerald

Title: Under the Egg
Author: Laura Marx Fitzgerald
Publisher: Puffin Books
Published: May, 26th, 2015
Pages: 256p
ISBN:  9780142427651

“Only two people know about the masterpiece hidden in the Tenpenny home - and one of them is dead. The other is Theodora Tenpenny. 

When Theo spills a bottle of rubbing alcohol on her late grandfather's painting, she discovers what looks like a priceless masterpiece underneath. That's great news for Theo, who's struggling to hang on to her family's two-hundred-year-old townhouse and support her unstable mother on her grandfather's legacy of $463. There's just one problem: Theo's grandfather was a security guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and if the painting is as valuable as she thinks it is, then her grandfather wasn't who she thought he was”

It wasn’t ordinary for me to step into a bookstore and bought a  book I barely heard before. First, I used to look on Goodreads or read my friend’s review to make a decision for buying a book. Because in my opinion, it is not wise to spend this very short time of life to read something not good enough, of course the standard will be diverse for different person. So, based on that principal, this book was quite surprised me because I love it from the very first time I saw it although I never heard of it. The cover mentioned about puzzling, mystery, art and hidden masterpiece gave a glimpse of hope for a good story inside it and I can tell that it’s not disappointing.

The only clue, Theo late grandfathers, Jack, still be able to mention before he died was,

Look under the egg.......there is a letter.....and a treasure.....before it’s too late

The old painting was showed a portrait of a bird with Madonna and baby Jesus that seemed so sad and mournful and with some Latin words inscribe on the painting that means,

Bread of life
Risen yet unrisen
Nourished the well-fed
And healed the healing angel

Along with Bodhi, Theo's new unusual friend, they started their project of solving the mystery of the painting which was apparently belong to one of the greatest painter of Italian Renaissance, Raphael. Although Theo and Bodhi could not understand the inscribe poem, they never tired of looking for explanation that eventually led them to a nun, Metropolitan Art Museum, veteran of world war II, a former chemist teacher, a librarian and the national archive. Under the Egg takes place in the present day with the flashbacks to the world-war-II and the Renaissance era and adding to that, New York as a setting. Sound pretty fascinating huh? Review from Kirkus describe this book pretty well, "If Dan Brown of The Da Vinci Code wrote middle-grade novels, this would be the one". 

I love this book with every details on it. It will tell you about the era when the greatest painter of the world was lived. They dragged me to wonder about Raphael and suddenly I was googling all things about him and his works, and with that I added a new row on my bucket list, it is for me to see the famous Raphael’s master piece, the School of Athens, which is located in the Raphael Room on Vatican. I am wandering how can I make that happen? But that is the great things about reading, it will take you to many strange places, introduce you to people you’ve never met before and somehow makes you want to know them more, and a particular time in history of the entire world that enrich you with culture and the way of people thinking that influenced by their society and so many great things, but the most important things about reading is to make you keep dreaming. 

I love Theo and Bodhi and Eddie, the Librarian, even though the author wasn't talked much about their characters, but the journey covered it all. I gave 4 stars for this mind blowing story.  

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  1. Reading your review make me curious about this book... especially when i read "Renaissance era" because i'm learning it now and i like history very much

    1. I think this book is a light reading compare to the real Renaissance book you're currently reading, because it is a middle-grade novel after all. But who knows? I would like to know your thought when you've read it :)