Sunday, 19 February 2012

The Book of Summers

Emylia Hall's debut novel The Book of Summers reads as a fairytale without the conventional use of make believe.  Reality is twisted into fiction, creating a beautiful, and most importantly readable, hybrid.

The story begins with (and is all about) Beth, who has been given an unwelcome package from her father.  Upon opening said package The Book of Summers is revealed to her, as well as some sad news.  This causes her to reflect on her childhood and the seven summer vacations she spent in Hungary.

To read this book on a holiday would be like taking a double vacation.  The descriptions of Summer in rural Hungary left me warm, intrigued and slightly jealous.  The passion for the country oozes from Hall's  prose; which in the beginning felt convoluted but eventually provided Beth with a clear voice I felt emotionally engaged with such a simple story.  I was so impressed that I hope The Book of Summers is not a fluke and that Hall's next offering is just as, if not more, magical.

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