Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Chocolat - Joanne Harris

Rating : 4.0/5
Reason for Reading : Something About Me Challenge, TBR Challenge, Books to Movies Challenge

Vivianne Rocher and her daughter Anock arrive in the French villiage Lansquenet (I like that it never really tells you quite where they are from) and are clearly marked as outsiders. They don't go to church and they open a chocolate chop opposite the church during Lent. Father Rayraud from the church takes this as open warfare and begins to undermine them and try to get them to leave the villiage.

A cast of excellent main and secondary characters, this novel really drew me in. The different chocolates made my mouth water and I loved the Pagan side to the novel that was missed out of the film (which I also enjoyed but for different reasons). I liked that you never quite knew where Vivianne was from origianlly and learning the shocking truth behind her upbringing was again something left out of the film. The war between them and "The Black Man" was done well and I liked that it wasn't specifically anti-christianity. The point was there are good and bad people, religion doesn't make you either neccessarily.

The ending was quite mixed. The new blessing to Vivianne's life was wonderful, but I was sad that the wind still called to them to move on again. It would be lovely if Harris wrote a sequel. To anyone who enjoyed the film, please read the book. It is very different whilst still retaining the charm of the film. I will dedinately be reading more from this author, although I have heard this is by far her best novel to date.


chrisa511 said...

Yay, Rhinoa's back ;) I haven't seen the movie or read the book, though Megan's been trying to get me to see the movie for awhile. I'll definitely be putting the book on my TBR list. It sounds like something that I'd really enjoy! Didn't know what it was about before honestly!

Literary Feline said...

I have seen the movie and enjoyed it, but I've never really had the desire to read the book. I definitely plan to read the author's Gentlemen and Players though. I am glad you enjoyed this one!

Ana S. said...

I've been meaning to read this book and watch the movie for a while. Maybe I'll add it as an extra to the Book to Movie challenge if I somehow manage to find the time. But even if not, I definitely want to read it sometime.