The Economist article is indeed fun. The shot at Tracy Chevalier seems par for the course at Bookslut, which also had this entry about the newly filmed "Girl with a Pearl Earing"
For myself, I thought "The Girl with the Pearl Earring" was an interminable bore, and that's in addition to projecting conceit towards everyone but the main heroine. I was not surprised they made a movie out of it -- fits so nicely with how Hollywood views the world (aka "hollywood knows best"). Descriptions of the author's follow-up works seem to confirm the suspicion that she was looking for a book-selling formula - and found one.
Enough about 3-rate literature and moviemaking, off to read about the Voynich manuscript and write architecture asessments and javadoc.