From Hook to Book

Year of Wonders

How do I talk about a book without gushing adjectives when my cheeks are glowing with writerly admiration and, in equal, turning green with writer envy?  A hard call when I’ve just read what’s now up there as one of my favourite books ever.

Geraldine Brooks Year of Wonders is an historical fiction tale, based on a true story, of a Derbyshire village who elect to quarantine themselves and their plague in the Spring of 1666 and spend a year cut off from the world. The writing is beautiful prose and evokes a strong sense of authenticity.  For me, it’s a page turner that reached a very satisfying twist of an ending. However, I do need to add that I (along with others, it seems on Goodreads) did qualm  over the epilogue, which took the story out of the world of the village to a happily ever after that I was not sure could or would have been possible for such a young, ignorant, unworldly girl of the day.  However, I deeply admired the writing, the storytelling and the wonderful drawing together of the plot threads to a powerful and unexpected resolution that I won’t spoil here by telling. The voice captivated me and I found the book in my hands at every opportunity for the two days it took to read it. A “must read” for anyone who loves history and place.

Book 8

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks 2008

Harper Perennial  ISBN: 978 1 84115 458 9


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8 thoughts on “Year of Wonders

  1. It’s fine to admire, even going a shade of green is fine, Chris.
    Remember though, with your own writing, to go with your heart.

  2. You’re absolutely right, Corinne. The power of story, at least for me as a writer, lies in the passion I have for it and for the characters. Still I hope one day my readers will read my novel with the same wonder and awe and be as transported as I was reading “Year of Wonders”.

  3. Hi Chris,
    I loved the writing in this book, but the storyline at the end disappointed me.
    Up until then I was swept along.

    • Me too. It was the first book in a long time that I couldn’t get back to fast enough. The very different mood, atmosphere and transition at the end (seemingly impossible for a girl of that time and of her socio/economic limitations) disappointed me too, despite wanting a happy ending for her.


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