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Things Bright and Beautiful por Anbra Salam
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Things Bright and Beautiful (edição 2018)

por Anbra Salam (Autor)

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261705,288 (4)1
Mission House was not built for three people. Especially when one of them won't stop humming. When Bea Hanlon follows her preacher husband Max to a remote island in the Pacific, she soon sees that their mission will bring anything but salvation. It's not just the rats and the hordes of mosquitos and the weevils in the powdered milk. Past the confines of their stuffy little house, amidst the damp and the dust and the sweltering heat, rumours are spreading of devil-chasers who roam the island on the hunt for evil spirits. And then are the noises from the church at night . . . Just as Bea begins to adapt to Advent Island, the arrival of an unexpected, wildly irritating and always humming house guest rattles her new life. And before long, trapped in the jungle and in the growing fever of her husband's insanity, Bea finds herself fighting for her freedom, and for her life. Things Bright and Beautifulis a powerful portrait of a mission gone awry and a marriage in crisis, with the strength of Bea at its heart.… (mais)
Membro:superpeer
Título:Things Bright and Beautiful
Autores:Anbra Salam (Autor)
Informação:Penguin (2018)
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
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Etiquetas:wishlist

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Things Bright and Beautiful por Anbara Salam

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How to describe ‘Things Bright and Beautiful’ by Anbara Salam? It is a tale of the 1950s set on a Pacific island where the author authentically creates the sweltering heat, the humidity, the tropical jungle and the natives. It is a claustrophobic tale of differing religious beliefs where confusion, conviction and malaria bring about an unexpected ending. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book, it was a wild card choice and I really enjoyed it.
Bea and Max Hanlon arrive on Advent Island in the remote New Hebrides as Max takes up his post as island missionary to spread the word to the heathen natives. It is not what they expected. Bea is soon picking rat droppings from their bag of rice while Max deals with a lack of clocks making scheduling a morning service difficult. Not to mention the group praying and singing at night, this ‘dark praying’ is intended to expel dark spirits and is done outside the Mission House whilst Max and Bea attempt to sleep. The authorial tone is at first fond and humorous as Bea and Max face up to their difficulties shackled by language differences and the late arrival of their trunks. They are literally thrown in at the deep end. Bea negotiates the many taboos and starts a kitchen garden. I particularly enjoyed the description of one mysterious vegetable as ‘hedge’. But their house is their own, until the previous missionary reappears unannounced. The always-humming Marietta cannot take a hint and tramps around as if she owns the place. She is the grit on which the story takes a dark and threatening turn.
Two small criticisms. There are so many peripheral characters with island names that I ceased to remember who was who. And at times the island dominated character and plot.
If you are looking for a novel in which to lose yourself, this is it. An atmospheric, spooky and at times downright yucky tale of how religion can turn quickly into fanaticism. It is about a fight for survival in a world which starts off as a dream and ends as a nightmare. I enjoyed Bea’s journey as she adapts to her new world, makes the best of things, makes friends, ignores the silliest taboos and gets herself into trouble.
In the jungle, is it the fittest that survive or the cleverest? A highly imaginative debut.
Read more of my book reviews at http://www.sandradanby.com/book-reviews-a-z/ ( )
  Sandradan1 | Oct 17, 2018 |
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Mission House was not built for three people. Especially when one of them won't stop humming. When Bea Hanlon follows her preacher husband Max to a remote island in the Pacific, she soon sees that their mission will bring anything but salvation. It's not just the rats and the hordes of mosquitos and the weevils in the powdered milk. Past the confines of their stuffy little house, amidst the damp and the dust and the sweltering heat, rumours are spreading of devil-chasers who roam the island on the hunt for evil spirits. And then are the noises from the church at night . . . Just as Bea begins to adapt to Advent Island, the arrival of an unexpected, wildly irritating and always humming house guest rattles her new life. And before long, trapped in the jungle and in the growing fever of her husband's insanity, Bea finds herself fighting for her freedom, and for her life. Things Bright and Beautifulis a powerful portrait of a mission gone awry and a marriage in crisis, with the strength of Bea at its heart.

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