zaterdag 12 december 2009

Chocolat, Joanne Harris

This afternoon I started reading the book Chocolat, by Joanne Harris (I haven't seen the movie yet) and I just finished it .... Does that say enough? I was captured by Vianne, her magic and how she loses herself in making her delicious creations, describing each confection so lovingly. Harris’ power of description is intoxicating.

About the book:
Chocolat begins with the arrival in a tiny French village of Vianne Rocher, a single mother with a young daughter, on Shrove Tuesday. As the inhabitants of Lansquenet-sous-Tannes clear away the remains of the carnival which heralds the beginning of Lent, Vianne moves with her daughter into a disused bakery facing the church, where Francis Reynaud, the young and opinionated curé of the parish, watches her arrival with disapproval and suspicion. When he realizes that Vianne intends to open a chocolate shop in place of the old bakery, thereby tempting the churchgoers to over-indulgence, Reynaud's disapproval increases. As it becomes clear that the villagers of Lansquenet are falling under the spell of Vianne's easy ways and unorthodox opinions, to the detriment of his own authority, he is quick to see her as a danger. Under Vianne's influence an old woman embraces a new life, a battered wife finds the courage to leave her husband, children rebel against authority, outcasts and strays are welcomed... and Reynaud's tight and carefully ordered community is in danger of breaking apart.

As Easter approaches, both parties throw themselves whole-heartedly into the preparations; Vianne for the chocolate festival she plans to hold on Easter Sunday, Reynaud into a desperate attempt to win back his straying flock. Both factions have a great deal at stake; the village is bitterly divided; and as the big day looms closer their struggle becomes much more than a conflict between church and chocolate - it becomes an exorcism of the past, a declaration of independence, a showdown between dogma and understanding, pleasure and self-denial.

P.s. can't wait to see the movie with Johnny Depp and Juliette Binoche
Related Posts