Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Wonder: a Novel / Emma Donoghue, 291 pp.

Lib, an English nurse and protegee of Florence Nightingale, is hired by a mysterious committee to travel to Ireland to observe the Wonder, a young woman who appears to be surviving without food.  She clashes with the girl's family, local religious authorities, and the Irish culture and landscape generally.  The story is set just 7 years post-Famine, and this is an incredibly bleak portayal.

The narrative has interesting aspects and an initial quality of ominous mystery.  But the plot unfolds in a fairly predictable manner, and the ending 'twist' was visible from quite a long distance.

I haven't read Room; it's interesting to note the similarities here in the theme of children isolated and in danger.

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