Time to play catch up with some reviews!! And yet another one that wasn’t on my original list – I really don’t know why I bothered with that! – but the mood just grabbed me to pick this up on Cosy Reading Night, and it was perfect for the #little part of my challenge at around 200 pages long and all I can say is WOW!! I adored Grief is the Thing with Feathers, but loved this even more!
ABOUT THE BOOK
There’s a village sixty miles outside London. It’s no different from many other villages in England: one pub, one church, red-brick cottages, council cottages and a few bigger houses dotted about. Voices rise up, as they might do anywhere, speaking of loving and needing and working and dying and walking the dogs.
This village belongs to the people who live in it and to the people who lived in it hundreds of years ago. It belongs to England’s mysterious past and its confounding present. But it also belongs to Dead Papa Toothwort, a figure schoolchildren used to draw green and leafy, choked by tendrils growing out of his mouth.
Dead Papa Toothwort is awake. He is listening to this twenty-first-century village, to his English symphony. He is listening, intently, for a mischievous, enchanting boy whose parents have recently made the village their home. Lanny.
published by Faber & Faber
Lanny by Max Porter £9.35
What a special book! Hypnotic, weird, heartbreaking, quirky, dark, spellbinding – just a glorious reading experience.. I’m beginning to expect nothing else but these kind of stories from Max Porter.
Told from different viewpoints it’s the story of a family – a couple with a young boy who is different to the other children in the village – he seems to have his own way of dealing with the world he lives in and is happy to be amongst nature rather than in the thick of things with children his own age. His actions are overseen by the presence of Toothworth, who watches over the happenings in the village with his own narrative of how the world is changing in front of him, but with special attention given o Lanny who is his favourite. He gets him!
I loved the viewpoints of Lanny and his mother and father – they both have different outlooks on life and how to raise their child – his father is always consumed by work and his commute, his mother is a writer who suffered with depression after Lanny was born so their move to the country was them trying to live a different way. They hire a local art teacher, Pete, to teach him and there is a connection between them. When Lanny goes missing he is the first under suspicion because he’s an outsider too. Watching on as the story unravels you really get to see how the assumptions on people fall under the microscope and how perception affects the reality of the situation.
This was a beautifully written story, the use of language and the way that Toothworth listens to all the dialogue of the villagers was just wonderful and often had me laughing with the randomness of the conversations. Just brilliant!!