Finished it!

People of the Book - Geraldine Brooks

Oh, but I did enjoy this one. Not just a rollicking good read, but a history lesson as well.  The story of the Haggadah is seen through the eyes of the people who created it, cared for it, and owned it, and takes us from the war and break up of Yugoslavia, the rise of Nazi Germany, and all the way back to the Spanish Inquisition and beyond. 


Fabulous research too. The sections on the restoration of old manuscripts, and the forensics involved with tracking down where the book had been by looking at the minute pieces of debris trapped in its pages were fascinating. 


I was fascinated too, by the descriptions of how these illustrated manuscripts were created. I had no idea that Persian cats were bred specifically for their hair to be used to make brushes for the most delicate paintwork. (I reckon I could paint the Sistine chapel with the amount of fur the Ginger Ninja has shed all over my coat.)


And no, the cats weren't skinned. The artist just snipped off a little bit of fur as and when it was required.