Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Five Quarters of the Orange by Joanne Harris

This book is charming and delicious. Joanne Harris always does a good job describing food in all varieties which makes my mouth water. But not only that. The five Quarters of the Orange is tale about a mother who has to raise her three children alone in France during second world war. She tries best but especially in the eyes of her youngest daughter Framboise she fails. Framboise gets in contact with a young German soldier and happens to attend an accident at the river Loire where the young soldier drowns. She and her brother decide to cover up the accident as they don't want anybody to know they had regular contact with him. The family has to leave the little Les Laveuses. When Framboise is grown up and a widow she decides to come back home but that nobody needs to know her true identity and opens a soon good-running crèperie. But her past will get to her sooner or later.

The story is told by Framboise being an old lady revealing the truth about the accident and of course what Oranges have got to do with it at all.

Very much is told about the relationships between mothers and daughters and the life in small villages in France during the second world war as well as today, which I liked. Harris' style is unique and somehow magical. I think that this book is at least as good as Chocolat.

I give it three stars and a half. Rounded up to four.


  1. I've had this book on my nightstand for quite some time. I've always been fascinated by food made magical in her stories.

  2. I enjoyed Chocolat, but have never felt an urge to read any more of her books.

  3. Nice review. Oddly, I've always found it hard to get into Harris's books, although their plots always sound so interesting.