To kick of 2014 we have 50 copies of Sue Monk Kidd's latest novel The Invention of Wings to giveaway. Inspired by real events and set in the deep south in the first half of the 19th Century, the book tells the story of two extraordinary women over a 30 year period; Sarah Grimké, a white daughter of a wealthy Southern landowner and Hetty 'Handful' Grimké who is given to Sarah as a slave for her eleventh birthday.
I haven't read The Secret Life of Bees but one of my all time favourite books is Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone With the Wind' and with it's themes of the Deep South, plantation life and slavery etc I would very much love a copy of your giveaway book!
Thanks Mumsnet for the free copy, made my day!! Gave this to my friend's daughter as I only have boys. She loves all the Dork Diaries and reported the following. "I read this in one go and loved it. Nikki is as dorky as ever, so are her friends and the boy of her dreams.....Brandon. The only thing that gets in the way is Mackenzie, and as always, she is super mean, perfect and sneaky. Anyway, the main part of the book is about the Valentine's dance..Nikki wants to go with Brandon but is so scared he'll go with someone else....what happens?? Read it yourself!!"
From talking to my friend's daughter (10), she thinks that you should be a little bit older to read this book as it talks about boyfriends, love, make up etc. I suppose it depends on the maturity of your child but good to know anyway.
I somehow missed the email saying I'd get a free book. Was having a bad couple of days and this landed in the post, lovely surprise, thank you very much. I started it last night and, so far, it's wonderful. It's so beautifully written that I wanna read every page aloud. I'll save judgment til the end though. Although these days it can take me up to a month to read a book!
I thought it was wonderful. The kind of book I did not want to end. I found even the insignificant characters tobe beautifully written and full of depth. I was disappointed to read the authors note at the end though. Having fallen in love with the story and the characters and the possibilities, I don't understand why the author felt the need to stray so much from the real stories and to invent some of the major characters. If you're going to write about real people, please stick to reality or change the names but add that it's based on the real story. Other than that though, I found it to be a truly magical book and I will buy the secret life of bees now.
Have just finished my free copy (thank you) - I loved The Secret Life of Bees, but this is better - I found it hard to put down, and you know that it's the sign of a good book when you are sad as you near the end because you want it to continue!
Just finished the novel and have to start by saying that I really enjoyed it and it helped to pass a delayed train journey perfectly.
I quite like the alternating chapters speaking from first Sarah's then Handful's points of view. Sometimes when this technique is used, I get to the end of one chapter and desperately want to stay with that character rather than having to switch to the other person, but with this is book that didn't happen so much. I'm not sure whether that is good or not though!
Personally, I found I most enjoyed the earlier sections when the girls were younger and was slightly disappointed when they had to grow up. Having said that, the story had to progress and they weren't going to change the world as 12 year olds.
The fact that there was so much discrimination against women at that time too was something I perhaps hadn't expected at the outset. While this obviously couldn't be compared to the inhumanity of slavery, it was something that had a huge impact on the lives of women and girls of the time.
It was definitely a very thought-provoking book - disturbing at times, very sad at others but well worth the read. I can quite see it following 'The Secret Life of Bees' in to the cinema before too long.
I wasn't so sure about this book at first. It felt like a story I already knew and didn't grip me like some books have. That soon changed as Sarah grew up and the story took a more complex turn. I liked the way both girls were fighting their own battles in different ways. I found the interaction of the two kept me interested. I wasn't sure about the end point; I felt it needed a few more days to complete the story properly. Overall a good read with strong characters which will stay with me for a while.
I received a free copy, started reading it yesterday and can't put it down. I haven't read any other books by the author, I think the language she uses is wonderful. I've read up to the girls turning 18/19 and it's clear their relationship will change in some way as they reach adulthood. It will be interesting to see how the story develops.
Thank you for the free copy. The book is really nice. I like the way it is written, the two characters are so real. The language of the writer is amazing. I don't want to finish this book. Usually I read on the tube and I take a longer way home to be able to read more I think this book could be a potential base for a good movie.
Apologies for being so late posting - I finished the book last week but was a bit tardy about finding the thread. I had just seen 12 Years a Slave at the cinema when I started reading and the book provided some much needed background on the history of abolition. I did enjoy the book and my favourite aspect was the relationship between the two girls, Handful the slave and Sarah, the daughter of a wealthy southern family. I was a little disappointed that this wasn't explored more fully especially in the earlier parts of the book when the two are children. I loved Handful - and it was in her character (and that of her mother) that the true awfulness of slavery hit home. Her voice is beautiful, and there were numerous examples of just lovely, poetic insight from her (and her mother) which I will try to dig out and post.
I was a little less keen on Sarah. I felt like I never really "got" her. As a key historical figure in the abolitionist movement and in early american feminism I would have liked to have read more about her achievements. Maybe it was the contrast with Handful, but I found her more than a little irritating at times.