Girl with a Pearl earring is a historical fictional book written in 1999 by the American writer Tracy Chevalier, the title of the book is the same as Vermeer’s painting which the author uses to set her story.
Griet is the protagonist both of the book and the painting. When we look at the painter’s portraits we see women doing everyday activities (the milkmaid, woman reading a letter, woman with a balance..) set in a background that tells us something about the people in the picture. In the girl with a pearl earring she is standing alone and with only a black background and this is what Chevalier uses to write her book. According to her this portrait only shows the relationship this young woman had with her master.
The story starts in 1666 when Greit has to leave her family because they are poor and her father can’t work as he is blind. In her new house she has to wok hard and her only escape is going into her master’s studio and help him with brushes, canvases and brushes, the relationship is close and though we know Griet’s feelings we never know about Vermeer.
Finally Vermeer paints her wearing rich and elegant clothes he borrows from his wife, but when the painting is finished he realizes he needs something, a pearl to show the light reflection. She decides to pose for him wearing Catherina’s pearls, When she discovers Greit , she is in trouble and has to llive. !0 years later, when she is married to Pietr, Vermeer leaves her the Pearl earrings and thus her honour is restored.