Roxi Reviews

Roxi Wilkinson has graciously agreed to share some of her recent reads with us. The following review is part of an ongoing series of guest posts written by Roxi:

Five Quarters of the Orange by Joanne Harris is her third novel and what a beauty it is.

Framboise Simon, ‘Boise’, returns to her childhood village along the Loire River.  The locals do not recognize her as the daughter of the women held responsible for a nightmarish killing during the German occupation years ago.  Harris weaves her multilayer story with intense depth of character, dark foreboding, and twists and turns of surprise.  Boise inherits a scrapbook of recipes, herbal cures and newspaper clippings from her mother.  The recipes come to life and ultimately save Boise.  With the help of a childhood friend the key to the village killing is pieced together with clues found in the recipes and the tiny, scribbly writing along the margins of the scrapbook.

Five Quarters of the Orange is a compelling story.  One I could not figure out how it would end despite long moments of pondering.  Though it has a dark feel about it, I was warmed with the sweetness found in the rubble of war.  I was especially drawn to the idea of finding ones mother through her recipes as I love to cook and find solace in my Mom and Grandmother’s recipes written in their own handwriting.

I do plan to read Harris’ previous books, Blackberry Wine and Chocolat.


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