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Ratings and Book Reviews (9 23 star ratings
9 reviews
)

Overall rating

4.2 out of 5
23
5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star
10 8 4 1 0

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    Superb Prose!

    This is, without doubt, a beautiful read. Augusta is very much a misunderstood child; the proverbial 'fish out of water' whose parents really don't understand her. Her sister is pretty and 'normal' but even as a young child Augusta has outgrown her small town surroundings. When her family suffer a tragedy of massive proportions, her home town can no longer hold this wandering spirit and she goes in search of .. well, happiness? Satisfaction? Or just something she can no longer find where she has been raised? Whilst I realised quite early on that this is a terrifically created novel with superb prose, it took an unusually long time for me to get into this book. It is skilfully created but to begin with the alternating chapters of someone not mentioned in the blurb threw me off and I wondered where it was heading. I don't re-read the synopsis prior to beginning to read, so it wasn't expectation; it just seemed out of place. I could tell that this was an amazing novel but I somehow never got the rewarding feeling that I know I should have. Why? No idea! I'm pretty sure that this is a book which other reviewers will rave about and I'm very happy to recommend it as I know in myself that I'm out of step here. Did I miss something? Not sure, but please don't let me put you off. I'm fairly certain that we shall hear a lot more from Joanna Glen! Four stars.
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    Minimal degrees of separation

    Great reading. This brings home how wonderful the universe is at sharing and crossing our paths. We all have roles to play and people we are destined to connect with. This story tells us exactly that.
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    A very unusual, quite sad feeling, book

    This was a very different book and one that's quite hard to describe. I'm still not sure if I particularly liked it or not... but it was certainly very different and one that I'll remember. There are two main characters, Augusta who lives in England and Parfait who lives in Burundi in Africa initially, but escapes to Spain by boat. Augusta is a twin, but is very different from her sister Julia who is the 'normal' twin. Augusta is a bit odd in her way of thinking and the way she looks at words all the time. Their parents are very straight and stuck in their ways, and her Father is definitely a bit odd, which is probably where Augusta gets it from. Augusta has also always had a fascination with Burundi since fixating on the word whilst young. Parfait was born in Burundi, but had a very hard life to start with, with all the unrest in their country. His Mother died, one of this brothers died, his Father was killed and his sisters abused and they then disappeared. So he decides to escape to Spain with his youngest brother, Zion, ending up washed up on a beach, like so many escaping refugees. The story follows both Augusta and Parfait's lives, with little chapters on each, but mostly Augusta, and you wonder where it's all going really, until it starts to become a bit clearer in that they are both working their way towards each other over the years. For me it was a bit of a struggle as I wasn't entirely sure where the story was going, and it felt quite disjointed at times, but it was also one of those books where I had to keep reading to see where it all ended up. There was a small incident of an animal dying too, right at the very end, which I wasn't happy about so put a bit of a damper on the end of the story for me. A very unusual, quite sad feeling, book.
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    Utterly fabulous

    Beautifully constructed, it made me happy to be sad. Be prepared to be emotional and enjoy it.
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    Quirky

    Augusta Hope is a very unusual character, analytical and a deep thinker she doesn’t feel a part of the world she inhabits. Told mostly over her childhood through to her teens we discover her world in Willow Crescent living with her parents and twin sister Julia, next door to a disabled child and in time across the road from a Spanish family who ignite something within her. This book is very much about Augusta and her perspective of her world and relationships, although there are some dramatic moments in her life it isn’t action based. I didn’t find Augusta easy to understand and as such like, there are times you wonder if she likes herself, she’s deliberately provocative yet largely unemotional. Not the easiest of reads however it is thought provoking about love, home and life.
23

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