The Essex Serpent – Sarah Perry Review

 

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So I fell in love with the cover as I’m sure most have you are also just as mesmerised by.  However I had flashbacks to Jesse Burton’s The Miniaturist … another book with a fancy cover and flashy marketing. I was worried that like The Miniaturist – The Essex Serpent would be completely over-hyped and would be impossible to fill any readers expectations.

I don’t blame the authors… I blame the publishers for tricking readers into buying books by putting some releases on such high pedestals that people can’t help but be a little disappointed.

To manage my expectations I went into the book expecting nothing at all.  And YAY it done the trick…

At first I was quite irritated with the writing style. Although textbook “beautiful”, I felt the choice of words and imagery was a little forced and didn’t flow. Words such as ‘implacable and ceded’ were thrown around a little too often. But I won’t criticise the book on its word choice because of my ‘limited’ vocabulary :D. As the story progressed (with my Thesaurus beside me) I got in the rhythm of things.

I felt Sarah’s characters were very balanced, loveable and charismatic. Sarah Perry was able portray most of the main characters quirks and emotions so the audience was able to relate to them. From their feelings of jealousy and temptation to embarrassment and guilt, the complex group dynamics was comical and full of emotion.

As a reader who really doesn’t enjoy Fantasy, Science Fiction or even the slight Magical Realism; I wasn’t sold on the whole serpent tale. It didn’t keep me gripped or in suspense. But I loved how it was used draw the characters together. Cora Seaborne is definitely my favourite, she’s the star of the show. Without her there would be no show. We didn’t get to know Cora on a very personal level as the narrative was a little distant. But like the Serpent Cora was used to hold the story together.

The Essex Serpent  has put me in the mood for Historical Fiction 😀 and I’m sure I’ll find plenty of those to keep me warm through the upcoming Autumn/ Winter. It’s a shame the book wasn’t released in Autumn because it would’ve been a perfect Winter Read.

My Rating: 4.5 stars

Have you read this? What did you think of the book? Impressed / not?

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Booktube

Favorite Required Reading (UK )

Hello Everyone!

I’ve decided to give Youtube a trial to share my opinions on all things book- related! I can’t believe I’m doing this  but I thought why not?

So here’s my latest video on my Favourite Required Reading where I share with you why I enjoyed:

  1. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
  2. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
  3. A Streetcar Named Desire – Tennessee Williams
  4. An Inspector Calls – J.B. Priestley

 

Thank You,

Jay

Chinua Achebe – Things Fall Apart

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As much as  Anxiety has stolen my appreciation for most social media platforms… I somehow seem to have
found my balance with Instagram …and it was on Instagram I stumbled accross  Chinua Achebes Things Fall Apart.

The book is split into two parts. I really enjoyed Part One  – I’ve never read anything quite like it, the few African literature I have read have been set in post colonial era so I found reading about Okonkwo’s daily life and tribe’s culture before European involvement very refreshing and insightful.

The tone changes within part 2. You do feel  Okonkwo’s loss of power and things falling apart in every sense for Okonkwo and his community.

I’m aware some readers have felt Okonkwo is a very obnoxious character and couldn’t bear hearing his journey or appreciate the novel because of that. But I think most people  can put that aside and maintain a neutral opinion of him throughout as I think the author may have intended.

Things Fall Apart hasn’t left me in a rush to read the rest of the trilogy any time soon,  but if you haven’t read it I would recommend it to those of you  interested in post colonial or African literature, even if you read it as a stand alone book.

My Rating : 3.75 Stars …to be precise

Goodreads