Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Remarkable Creatures

Tracy Chevalier

From the moment she's struck by lightening as a baby, it is clear Mary Anning is different.  Though poor and uneducated, she learns on the windswept, fossil-strewn beaches of the English coast that she has a unique gift: "the eye" to spot fossils no one else can see.  When she uncovers an unusual fossilized skeleton in the cliffs near her home, she sets the religious community on edge, the townspeople to gossip--and the scientific world alight with both admiration and controversy.  Prickly Elizabeth Philpot, a middle-class spinster and also a fossil hunter, becomes Mary Anning's unlikely champion and friend, and together they forge a path to some of the most important discoveries of the nineteenth century.

My Take:

Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Dan Brown's Angels and Demons, Philippa Gregory's The Other Boleyn Girl, Erin Moran's Nefertiti.  Now I'm sure you are on the absolute edge of your seats waiting with bated breath to find out what all these books have in common.  Well...each one of these books was my introduction to their respective author and caused me to fall head over heels for said author, and run out to the book store and buy up every other book the author has written.  We've all got these authors.  Sometimes they are guilty pleasures we may look over our shoulders to make sure no one is witnessing our purchase (I did this with Twilight) and sometimes they're ones we are quite proud to genuinely enjoy (Austen is my proud favorite :)  Anyway, Tracy Chevalier's Remarkable Creatures is one book I think I'll be adding to the list.  I can't wait to read more as I absolutely loved her writing style.  The book is a period story set in the 19th century which explores many different ideas such as geology, 19th century class and gender expectations and unlikely friendship.  It is set at a pace which mirrors the speed of life in that point in history.  The perfect "when life was simpler and moved a little slower" pace creates a wonderfully authentic vibe.  But please, don't confuse a tame and mellow pace with a boring one.  The book is absolutely fascinating as fact and fiction are interwoven seamlessly to form a beautifully told, character driven story.  This is a perfect book for a person looking to relax, take their time, and just enjoy a great story.  1, Pay Full Price.

Do you agree with my review?  Do you think I'm totally off base?  Either way I'd love to hear from you, be sure to leave a comment and tel me how you feel!

If Remarkable Creatures was a movie, it would be rated PG

***FTC Disclosure:  This book was provided in exchange for an honest review, no other compensation was given, all opinions are my own***
I enjoyed this book trailer, so I've included it below:

If you are interested in purchasing Remarkable Creatures, please consider supporting The Book Buff by purchasing from the following Amazon link, thank you!

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Jessica (BookLover) said...

Great review! I want to read this book now. :)

Sam said...

This books is sitting on my bedside table waiting to be read. After your review, I'm even more excited to read it!

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

I've only read one of Tracy Chevalier's books, Girl with the Pearl Earring, and I loved it! I can't wait to read this one, and you've crafted such a wonderful and excellent review that I'm annoyed that it's 10:35 at night and the bookshops are all closed!! :)

mummazappa said...

I have read The Girl With the Pearl Earring and The Lady and the Unicorn and loved them. I want to read this one too, but so many books so little time!

TwoBibliomaniacs said...

I’m a big Chevalier fan an anxious to read this one. Also, thanks for reaching out to me on Book Blogs! I definitely have a lot to learn… I’m a new follower.

If you get a chance please stop by and take a look at my blog - http://twobibliomaniacs.blogspot.com

Travis said...

I love period novels almost as much as I love post modernist novels. This sounds like something I will check out. I like your review. You gave just the amount of plot information and just the right amount of analysis of the text and why you like it.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great book. Nice review!

Jenn said...

I've never even heard of this author before, and after reading the synopsis.... I was ready to scoff. The idea does not sound up my alley, and I have to say, I was shocked (pleasantly) to read your take on it. I must give it a go, I think. Thank you..... hmmmm. I sense my horizons being broadened. :)

Mari said...

great reviews. new follower btw.


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