Five Quarters Of The Orange ペーパーバック – 2002/1/1
カセット, オーディオブック, 完全版
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Beyond the main street of Les Laveuses runs the Loire, smooth and brown as a sunning snake - but hiding a deadly undertow beneath its moving surface. This is where Framboise, a secretive widow, plies her culinary trade at the crêperie - and lets her memory play strange games.
As her nephew attempts to exploit the growing success of the country recipes Framboise has inherited from her mother, a woman remembered with contempt by the villagers, memories of a disturbed childhood during the German Occupation flood back, and expose a past full of betrayal, blackmail and lies.
"Her strongest writing yet: as tangy and sometimes bitter as Chocolat was smooth" (Independent)
"Outstanding ... beautifully written" (Daily Mail)
"Joanne Harris a naturally sensuous writer, but her latest book has a dark core...Her descriptive and narrative talents are put to a profounder use...This gripping tale is bound to be made into a film. It's as vivid a journey through human cruelty and kindness as I've read this year" (Daily Telegraph)
"Harris indulges her love of rich and mouthwatering descriptive passages, appealing to the senses ... Thoroughly enjoyable" (Observer)
"Just as she did in Chocolat, Harris indulges her love of rich and mouth-watering descriptive passages, appealing to the senses with seductively foreign names, and evoking the textures and smells of food. These descriptions are suffused with a child's wide-eyed wonder that lends the story a magical quality, almost like a folk tale or a children's story. Even having the Occupation as a backdrop, Harris sets out to tell a story that proves, like her previous books, to be thoroughly enjoyable..." (Guardian)
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The story is about secrets. Framboise returns to her home village after being gone (we later learned banished) for over forty years. She comes with an assumed name, but lives on her family farm, hoping to remain aloof and anonymous. The author takes us back to the summer when everything went badly for Framboise's family, particularly her mother. At that time Framboise was a wild nine-year-old who loved to escape to the woods and fish. It was also during the time of the Nazi invasion. Framboise and her brother and sister befriend a Nazi soldier and that, of course, leads to trouble.
The reader suspects disaster throughout the book as the author skillfully takes us from the present to the past. The story builds as the time moves forward. She provides enough hints throughout to make the ending predictable but still satisfying.
Joanne Harris writes beautifully. I couldn't help but mark some amazing passages:
...His moony, round face has darkened, grown pouchy and mournful. A limp mustache the color of chewed tobacco.
...My breath stopped. I felt as if a flake of fire had blocked my windpipe and suddenly I was underwater, brown river clutching me under, fingers of flame reaching into my throat, my lungs...
...age had shrunk him; had softly sunk him into himself, like a failed soufflé.
...we had watched her with the wary caution of primitives at the feet of their god--and indeed, she was a kind of idol to us, a thing of arbitrary favors and punishments, and her smiles and frowns were the vane upon which our emotional weather turned.
Harris tells a story about love turned to hate about fear turned to violence and about the destruction of families due to war. She does it in a beautiful way that will keep the reader turning pages. This isn't just another book about the tyranny of World War II. It's much more than that.
If you like beautiful writing with vivid descriptions of village life and people this book is for you. If you like reading about savory food and preparations of amazing sauces, breads coming so clearly from the page the reader can practically taste them, this book is for you. If you like mystery and intrigue this book is for you.