Fri, March 1, 2013

A Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty Review

A Corner of White book cover

A Corner of White book cover

A Corner of White
By Jaclyn Moriarty
Publication date: April 1, 2013
Arthur A. Levine Books, 384 pages
Source: Borrowed from the generous and beautiful Mrs. Heise

The first in a rousing, funny, genre-busting trilogy from bestseller Jaclyn Moriarty!

This is a tale of missing persons. Madeleine and her mother have run away from their former life, under mysterious circumstances, and settled in a rainy corner of Cambridge (in our world).

Elliot, on the other hand, is in search of his father, who disappeared on the night his uncle was found dead. The talk in the town of Bonfire (in the Kingdom of Cello) is that Elliot’s dad may have killed his brother and run away with the Physics teacher. But Elliot refuses to believe it. And he is determined to find both his dad and the truth.

As Madeleine and Elliot move closer to unraveling their mysteries, they begin to exchange messages across worlds — through an accidental gap that hasn’t appeared in centuries. But even greater mysteries are unfolding on both sides of the gap: dangerous weather phenomena called “color storms;” a strange fascination with Isaac Newton; the myth of the “Butterfly Child,” whose appearance could end the droughts of Cello; and some unexpected kisses…

— Goodreads.com description

What a strange, nonsensical book A Corner of White is! I was already a fan of Jaclyn Moriarty’s contemporary writing — A Year of Secret Assignments was such a fun book — but this one is a definite departure.

The story is a genre-bender, following both Madeleine’s modern life in Cambridge and Elliot’s fantastical life in the Kingdom of Cello. It’s part fairy tale, part fantasy with bits of contemporary and sci-fi thrown in. Ambitious! Sure, it comes off as confusing in parts, but you have to applaud an author for trying something new.

A Corner of White is for slower readers — the type who appreciate a unique turn of phrase, a fresh point of view and plenty of oddities. And quirkiness! Fans of large, quirky casts of characters will find this to be a clever and charming read.

As someone who values whimsy and all things nonsensical, I can appreciate what Moriarty’s done here. But, overall, it was a bit of a trudge to get through the slow pacing, to be honest. Anyhow, depends on the type of reader you are. In the end, I had mixed feelings about the book but was overall delighted to see Moriarty try something different.

Anna Reads young adult book blog

PS: Love this quote on it from Markus Zusak: “Perfectly strange, and absolutely comical and heartfelt.”

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Posted by: Anna   •   In: australia, fantasy, jaclyn moriarty, quirky
9

9 Comments

  1. Tara said:

    Yeah, this does sound super ambitious. But I do enjoy the cover!

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  2. We Heart YA said:

    How intriguing…

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  3. Alexa Y. said:

    I’m really intrigued by this one for some reason. While I do sometimes have a hard time with books that move slowly, I do also find that I tend to like them in the end 🙂

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  4. Annette said:

    I didn’t care for A Year of Secret Assignments because I thought it was slow. So, I’m glad this book is different, but the part about being for slow readers gives me pause. Thanks for the great review.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  5. Genevieve Hayes said:

    Looking forward to this one. I really liked Jaclyn Moriarty’s “The Betrayal of Bindy MacKenzie”, although part of my love for the book was the fact that it was set in Australia, where I live. It’ll be interesting to see whether I like her books as much when they’re set in another country and another world.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  6. My Full Bookshelf Reviews said:

    This is on my to-read list! I can’t wait to read it.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  7. Bookworm1858 said:

    I got this after being emailed the widget from Netgalley and am hoping to enjoy it since I’ve liked her contemporary titles. I’m encouraged by its unique genre-bending approach.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  8. Lori said:

    I’ve been looking sooo forward to this one. I love whimsey and slightly odd books. I’m sad to hear it’s a little slow, though. I’m still anxious to read it!

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

  9. Cassie Gutman said:

    i love jaclyn moriarty, and i’ve definitely been looking forward to this one. thanks for reviewing.

    i have a contest going on on my blog right now – you should check it out!

    http://happybooklovers-a-gogo.blogspot.com/2013/03/win-book.html

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, March 1, 2013

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