Saturday, 11 May 2013

The Earth Hums in B Flat

Author: Mari Strachan

Published: 2010

Publisher: Canongate

What They Say: Gwenni Morgan is an incorrigible free spirit with a penchant for eavesdropping and a stubborn need to understand human behavior, which merely leads to more questions. Her struggle to define the world around her is offset by a fantastic dream world where each night she rises from the bed she shares with her sister and flies high into the sky above her small Welsh village. There, Gwenni becomes tuned into the earth's softest subtleties, and its hidden mysteries.

When a neighborhood family is rocked by the sudden, unexplainable disappearance of their patriarch, Gwenni believes that her unknown talents will allow her to discover the truth. But distinguishing fact from fiction carries more difficulties than she first predicted, and her quest for answers will soon lead her closer to home than she ever imagined.

What Sheli Says: I was really looking forward to reading this book as both a young adult book and being one of the few modern stories set in North Wales.

I really enjoyed reading the story and found the main character, Gwenni, endearing and innocent. I also liked that we learnt a lot about the wider community without it being too wordy. It was also very distinctly Welsh and I could very clearly picture a North Walean community and all of the gossiping that goes on there!

I wasn't really that keen on the more fantastical elements of the book and am unsure that they added a great deal to the story overall. I also found the timing of the book a little confusing as I couldn't place the era. I suppose that this gave it a timeless feel, but as there were some references to what I think was the 1950s, I would have liked a little more clarity for me to know if I was on the right track.

An enjoyable read.

Sheli's Rating: 7/10

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