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Book giveaway: The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd - CLOSED

(33 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 06-Jan-14 16:44:06

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.

Sue Monk Kidd is the award-winning and bestselling author of The Secret Life of Bees. Her latest novel promises to 'provoke, disturb, educate and above all grip readers with its narrative power'. Find out more about the book and read an extract. If you'd like to read the book and review - either by joining the discussion on this thread or posting a review, apply for a free copy before midday on Friday 10 January.

Magicstars Wed 05-Mar-14 07:18:33

I have just finished reading this. I Couldn't put it down towards the end!

I wasn't completely drawn in until about half-way through and so it was a slow start. Initially I thought this was a story that had already been told (in books such as The Help). Whilst very important to share, it didn't have me turning the pages with huge enthusiasm, until half way through the story.

The harrowing descriptions of the torture enduring by the slaves haunt me & I was willing Sarah & Handful on to make a difference.

I loved the twist, examining the Women's spirituality & the different pathways open to Handful & Sarah as young women. It was Sarah's introduction to the Quakers that captivated me. From her leaving Charleston, I couldn't put the book down. I am so pleased that the story is based on true events and that the sisters existed. Their story is truly inspirational.

Thank you for giving the opportunity to review this. I highly recommend it.

FanofVan Tue 04-Mar-14 21:08:58

I take a long time to read a book (too many interruptions!) but this one is really enjoyable. Very well written and I love the way it switches from one character to the other. Looking forward to seeing what happens...!

Pascha Mon 03-Mar-14 12:14:52

I finally finished this book at the weekend. I set myself time to actually read more than 10 pages at once and it really made the difference. With time to get to grips with the story I found myself more and more engrossed as Sarah and Handful grew up and dealt with everything thrown at them. I must confess to being on tenterhooks over the last few pages. Don't think I breathed til the end...

I ended up googling to find out a bit more about some of the historical characters as I know little about this period in American History so it was educational for me.

I did like reading the authors note at the end, it filled in a couple of gaps for me.

Overall a great book. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to read it.

nwstokes Sun 23-Feb-14 21:27:52

2nd of 3 books received. This was a good one. The old problem of needing to finish reading the book in one go. The idea of two characters having a separate story took a little bit of getting use to but otherwise a thoroughly good read.
I must agree with HelenHen's comment the author's notes at the end were not really needed.
Would recommend this book is read.

Castlelough Sun 23-Feb-14 16:32:46

Pascha I am a bit like you - about 1/3 through as well, but can't seem to prioritise finishing it. I really like what I have read so far and promise to post a review as soon as I get to the end smile.

Pascha Sat 22-Feb-14 18:28:55

I'm about a third of the way through so far, I get hooked on it for 20 minutes in the bath and then forget to carry on but so far it seems very good. Will post a review when I get to the end but this could be some time.

KJ123 Sat 15-Feb-14 19:28:19

Thanks so much for my free copy! I am still only about half way through but am really enjoying it. It almost keeps me up at night, turning more pages - it would keep me up more if I was younger and less likely to fall asleep! I like how the characters alternate in telling their stories, and how Sarah was probably very different to most white people at that time. Hetty's feistiness reminds me a bit of Jane Eyre! I have a,ways enjoyed these type of historical stories, as they had another dimension in terms of interest and learning about the past. Really interested to see what will happen to the characters by the end of the story.i would be keen to read her other book/ s too, based on this one. Thanks again!

Castlelough Tue 11-Feb-14 22:50:14

I'm still reading the novel. Just wondering whether I post here or do I write a review somewhere else?

HoneywithLemon Tue 11-Feb-14 13:34:33

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.

Overall, an engaging read and I'd recommend it.

vanbandi Mon 03-Feb-14 20:16:03

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 smile
I think this book could be a potential base for a good movie.

Norrsken Mon 03-Feb-14 19:44:58

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.

MrsRedWhite214 Fri 31-Jan-14 17:35:02

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.

GreenShadow Fri 31-Jan-14 17:13:07

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.

AnnieCatsmumtoo Thu 30-Jan-14 09:01:00

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!

HelenHen Tue 28-Jan-14 19:07:06

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.

Pascha Sat 25-Jan-14 13:01:29

I received my copy last week and its waiting in the bathroom for me to start it tonight when I get to wallow in the bath. Can't wait.

beanandspud Sat 25-Jan-14 00:53:52

Really enjoying this so far, thank you mn. Will post again when I get a bit further.

Castlelough Fri 24-Jan-14 12:33:32

So far, so very good!

Castlelough Thu 23-Jan-14 19:32:13

My book arrived today!!!!
Thank you so much! Really excited! Have just finished The Last Runaway which includes the issue of runaway slaves in America 1850s so this is a perfect followup read! :-)

Castlelough Thu 23-Jan-14 00:39:42

Hoping for my copy to arrive soon! Thanks for the email flowers.

HelenHen Sat 18-Jan-14 14:53:13

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!

katb1973 Tue 14-Jan-14 12:30:44

Whoops posted on wrong book. Sorry everyone!! Now to get on the right thread!!

katb1973 Tue 14-Jan-14 12:29:26

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.

GlassCastle Tue 14-Jan-14 09:37:42

Excited. Very much looking forward to this.

HoneywithLemon Tue 14-Jan-14 09:04:07

Looking forward to receiving my copy and joining the discussion!

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