I've always enjoyed Agatha Christie whenever I picked one of her books, though the level fluctuated somewhat. Now I know why this one is held up there with "And then there were none", and it deserves the praise.
The mystery is a good one: closed quarters, and it keeps getting more intricate and tangled with each chapter. This, I expected.
What I did not expect, was the emotional charge. I felt intrigued and amused for most of it.
Then mentions of loyalty get dropped here and there, and as it peaked at the end, it dawns: so many people, and it's the real deal.
I felt awe, kinship and compassion in the end.
So, yeah. Full stars.
“In my opinion, M. Poirot,” he said, “the first theory you put forward was the correct one"
*pleased sigh* So gorgeous.
Dandelion Wine is a beautiful, whimsical love letter to those memories of summer that are so vivid, so powerful, we can feel the baking sun, the weight and smell of the air, the joy and lassitude when we recall them.
It goes from one episode to the next fluidly and with little warning, connecting and weaving them. Add in Bradbury's style and the result is a bit like dreams, a bit like memories, introspective, nostalgic and at points philosophical.
There were episodes to pull every shade of emotion, and I loved so many of them I'd have serious trouble picking a favorite. Grandma's cooking made me so hungry and also miss my grandfather very much. Colonel's Freeleigh's bits and John's departure made me tear a bit. I laughed out loud with the witch debacle. Lavinia's had me switch between cheering on and wanting to thump her, and scared me quite a bit. And the lime-vanilla ice-cream one! So many tangled feels!
It was an excellent read to savor, and one I'll revisit.
About every-other line is a quotable observation, a stab at societal mores, a joke, or all of the above. Algernon's being the most egregious. Prime case would be
The truth is rarely pure and never simple.
I had fun, and I reckon the rising level of ridiculous would be even better watching it performed.
Second volume of this saga is sooo much better. Better than the first volume and better on second read.
Better than the first because it felt more grounded somehow. Despite the whole "magic doorway" thing, it was way less surreal than "The Gunslinger". The writing was more rounded too, and I connected better with the characters.
Better on second read because there was a dimension of meaning and character growth I could not appreciate first time around (having read it as a stand-alone), and because I'm older, and no matter how mature you think you are, there is a lot you can't really understand when you are a teen.
Despite remembering almost everything, I was not bored. At all. I actually sped through 3/4 of it before my brain revolted clamoring for sleep. That's a "good stuff" stamp, if there is ever one.
I'm full on board of this train now, and will be reading the next install soon.