I am a HUGE fan of Atkinson’s first three novels (especially Behind the Scenes at the Museum), so why it taken me so long to read this book? It suffered the fate of many books that I buy or am given as gifts: it got buried underneath the library books and book-group books that had to be read by a deadline and ended up in the “vacation pile” (books in pb format to be taken on vacation and left behind for others to read).
Anyway, it was fantastic and I can’t wait to read the sequels. So many writers get tagged as “quirky”, but Atkinson truly is, in the best way. She finds humor in (often violent) tragedy, beauty and pathos in the most ordinary people and events. I love the way she writes. Her plotting is such that you want to rush through to get to the next chapter, but her prose is such that you want to slow down and savor every word.
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About the reviewer: Michele Bolay has worked in the children’s department since the 90s. She organizes several programs like Framed! and can be found running the summer volunteer program.