Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Review: Theodora Goss' "The Thorn and The Blossom: A Two-Sided Love Story"

Hardcover: 82 pages
Publisher: Quirk Books (January 17, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 159474551X
ISBN-13: 978-1594745515
Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 7.6 inches
ARC Copy Courtesy Of: Eric at Quirk Books

Synopsis From The Back Of The Slipcover:

One enchanting romance.  Two lovers keeping secrets.  And a uniquely crafted book that binds their stories forever.

When Evelyn Morgan walked into the village bookstore, she didn't know she would meet the love of her life.  When Brendan Thorne handed her a medieval romance, he didn't know it would change the course of his future.  It was almost as if they were the cursed lovers in the old book itself...

Information About The Book From The Back Of The Slipcover:

The Thorn and the Blossom is a remarkable literary artifact:  You can open the book in either direction to decide whether you'll first read Brendan's, or Evelyn's account of the mysterious love affair.  Choose a side, read it like a regualr novel--and when you get to the end, you'll find yourself at a whole new beginning.

Book Blurb:

The Thorn and The Blossom is the story of 2 star-crossed lovers.

Evelyn Morgan is a young American student studying at Oxford when she walks into Thorne & Son, a bookstore in the Cornish village of Clews.  Little does she know, but she is about to meet the love of her life.  And when Brendan Thorne hands her a midieval poem called The Book of the Green Knight, he doesn't know that it will shape his future forever.  After that first meeting, they don't see each other for years--yet neither ever stops thinking about the other.  It's as if they are the haunted lovers in the old book itself.

Saph's Review:

This is one of the most unique novels and I'm glad I was given a chance to read and review this.  Unfortunately, I may not have discovered this literary gem otherwise.

When Evelyn, an American, makes an impromptu visit across the ocean to Cornwall, she hopes to just get away from it all for a week; Oxford and her studies, her parents...She wasn't counting on meeting Brendan Thorne and forming a connection to him.  While walking through a forest together near the end of her week-long vacation, Brendan kisses Evelyn, but when she opens her eyes she sees "hallucinations" that make him appear to be turning into vegetation.  Evelyn has been seeing "things" since her childhood and had hoped that she outgrew them.  She flees back to America without a backward glance.  Fast-forward 10 years....Evelyn has published a book, gotten her PhD, and a job at a southern college; the same college that Brendan is also a professor.  They rekindle their love and only when Brendan reveals his secret do things end the same way they did 10 years ago...Evelyn flees but this time she goes back to Cornwall.  Will Brendan and Evelyn ever be together?

The story is left open-ended and shrouded in mystery but it's thought provoking as you contemplate how things could have been if the author were to have written 1 or 2 more pages.  She leaves those aspects up to your imagination...you pretty much conclude the book however you want to with the details that Ms. Goss leaves in the final few paragraphs of each account.

I started this novel by reading Evelyn's account first then I flipped it over and read Brendan's.  Of course, many of the sections of the book are mirror images of each other, but the author does such a majestic job piecing everything together.  We get additional observations and points-of-view from each character in their respective accounts.  The writing style is flawless; the thoughts conveyed without awkwardness; the 10-year gap doesn't impede the telling of the story; and the plot and characters are solid.

It is a nice, fulfilling read without a bunch of useless filler and nonsense.  I was captivated from the first page and was able to read Evelyn's and Brendan's accounts in one sitting....Each account is approximately 37 pages long.

I'm extremely proud to place this accordian-style book on my bookshelf!!

eReaders only wish they could be as awesome as this hardcover, accordion-style book!!!

Here's a link to show how it works!
YouTube Presentation of "The Thorn and the Blossom"

If you go to the Amazon page (see Amazon image below) you may also read a
Q & A session with the author, Theodora Goss!


Item is available to be preordered--Please click the Amazon image below to place your order:

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