7 journalers for this copy...
It will now cross the Atlantic to be read by Froggie66. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
Holy Fools is Joanne Harris's most enjoyable novel yet, a beautifully detailed and sharply observed piece that emotionally moves the reader unlike anything she has tackled before. The immense success of Chocolat and Coastliners has made Harris one of the most cherished authors at work today, and each new book is something of an event.
Holy Fools is set in 17th century France, and the central character is Juliette, a former actress and rope dancer who has given up her travelling life to become a teaching nun at a remote abbey. Juliette has settled with her young daughter into an existence very different from that she knew, and she finds comfort from the advice of the wise and friendly abbess.
Harris brilliantly delineates both phases of her heroine's life: the colourful earlier era and the new demands of the semi-cloistered life. Things change radically when the abbess dies and her place is taken by an 11-year-old girl whose appetite for reform quickly destroys much that Juliet has come to love in her new life. What makes the book so refreshingly original is not just the unusual structure (the heroine's dual life alone is handled with radiant detail), but the surprising new trajectory the narrative takes after the death of the abbess, as everything Juliette was used to begins to go wrong.
We become involved in every minor crisis, however much we question that the religious life is the answer to her problems. Juliette is a brilliantly drawn character, and the plotting of this ambitious novel is both thoughtful and invigorating, while the basic theme--the ploys we all use to distract ourselves from the painful realities of existence--is handled with subtlety.
The book was a fast read for me. Based in 17th Century France with the ever present prosecution for being a witch and the religious frenzy. I liked the historical setting and it being in France. The religious aspect of it was not my most favourite. The story somewhat set in a Nunnery along with a wandering gypsy circus with a lot of moral angst. It is very much of that time. Well written though and definitely kept my attention til the end.
Don't get me wrong it was a good read and I am sure if you like historicals this will be one for you too.
All is well until the abbess dies and the new abbess who is only eleven comes with an old acquaintance, Le Merle. He is posing as a priest but has the most evil of agendas. Juliette, now Sister Auguste would expose him but he is holding her daughter and she must find a way to help the other nuns and save her daughter.
I have mixed feelings about this book. I found the storyline compelling but the ending fell flat. I had difficulty getting into the story but once there, was riveted. The information about the nuns and their lives during this time period was interesting.
This was a interesting historical novel taking place in France in the early 1600's.
Now ready for a new reader
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I enjoyed this book. Like all the Joanne Harris books I have read there were a few twists that made it interesting.
Sorry for hanging on to this for so long. I am sending this on to tribefan to wild-release at one of the release events her local BC group participates in :)
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