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Monday, May 5, 2008

book talk

Finished A Curse as Dark as Gold by the incredibly talented Elizabeth Bunce. What an amazing book. Bunce retells Rumplestiltskin here, but she makes the tale her own. Charlotte Miller loves her wool mill with a great and all consuming passion. But there's a curse. And bad luck has tampered with generations of Millers. Her father has died with some important secrets. Her mother's death holds mystery as well. Uncle Wheeler appears with some dark ulterior motives. Creditors want the mill gone from Miller hands. Sister Rosie is desperate enough to call forth some mystical forces. And then two other gentlemen appear. Well, ultimately three gentlemen appear. The handsome and kind and more powerful than he looks banker Randall Woodstone is one. The mysterious and magic and malevolent Jack Spinner is the other. And eventually, Charlotte's newborn baby son is another. All these people and forces collide into one brilliantly written novel that brings the wool industry and rural England in times gone by to life fully and lushly. I'm in awe, Elizabeth Bunce! Truly and utterly.

Four out of four stars.

Til next time...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sounds like something to put on the must-read list. The title alone gives me goosebumps.

And what's up with the traditional Rumplestiltskin story, anyway? Or any of the fairy tales where the girl marries the prince/king who abuses her and just lives happily ever after like it is a perfectly normal thing to be locked in a room and forced on pain of death to complete an impossible task.

~Beth

Joy said...

Check out the SurLaLune fairy tale site. It's one of the places she went for research and a place I hung out when I was researching Russian folklore for SPARK. Lots of good stuff on the Rumplestiltskin-esque tales. She also deals with some of this in a page or two at the end of the book where she discusses her influences and central questions.

Anonymous said...

I think I could get lost in that website! Thanks for the tip.

~Beth