I’m going to use these posts to keep you updated on my thoughts and feelings about whatever I’m reading at the minute. I read quite quickly so there might just be one at the beginning and then my full review at the end. Maybe a few if it’s a long book, or if I’m struggling through it.
I am currently reading Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller. This is a debut novel that won the Desmond Elliott Prize 2015. The synopsis taken from Goodreads is as follows:
1976: Peggy Hillcoat is eight. She spends her summer camping with her father, playing her beloved record of The Railway Children and listening to her mother’s grand piano, but her pretty life is about to change.
Her survivalist father, who has been stockpiling provisions for the end which is surely coming soon, takes her from London to a cabin in a remote European forest. There he tells Peggy the rest of the world has disappeared.
Her life is reduced to a piano which makes music but no sound, a forest where all that grows is a means of survival. And a tiny wooden hut that is Everything.
I was intrigued by this book. I think I was browsing through the Amazon 3 for £10 section, looking for a third book and came across this. It sounded dark and shocking, yet had an air of innocence and magic about the cover that drew me in.
I am about 25% into the book, having started it three days ago and am enjoying it overall. Fuller immediately informs the reader that Peggy makes it back from the cabin in the forest, although she does not mention why or how. This was a bit surprising. The first chapter, however, is used as a sort of prologue, although it’s labeled as chapter one. From there she looks back and the story really gets going. The story from there on is a discovery of how she got to that moment.
The language used is beautifully descriptive and engaging. I thought that maybe it was a little bit unrealistic, considering it’s narrated by an eight year old girl, but reading a bit further, it’s more like she’s reminiscing after her return. Having just read a book that had very little description (more on that in another post), any book where the author has actually thought about the words used is a welcome change.
It is taking me longer than usual to get through, maybe because the language needs to be fully absorbed and appreciated. Maybe I’ve just been a bit busier than usual this week. I don’t think it’s a reflection on my enjoyment of the book though.
Right now, I am hooked and can’t wait to carry on.