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Book Review: Briefly, A Delicious Life By Nell Stevens

Plot:

In 1473, fourteen-year-old Blanca dies in a hilltop monastery in Mallorca. Nearly four hundred years later, when George Sand, her two children, and her lover Frederic Chopin arrive in the village, Blanca is still there: a spirited, funny, righteous ghost, she’s been hanging around the monastery since her accidental death, spying on the monks and the townspeople and keeping track of her descendants.

Blanca is enchanted the moment she sees George, and the magical novel unfolds as a story of deeply felt, unrequited longing—the impossible love of a teenage ghost for a woman who can’t see her and doesn’t know she exists. As George and Chopin, who wear their unconventionality, in George’s case, literally on their sleeves, find themselves in deepening trouble with the provincial, 19th-century villagers, Blanca watches helplessly and reflects on the circumstances of her own death (which involves an ill-advised love affair with a monk-in-training).

Charming, original, and emotionally moving, this is a surprisingly touching story about romantic fixation and a powerful meditation on creativity.

Review:

The writing style was good, interesting chapter names as this was a unique element of this novel.

We are taken to Mallorca where this ghost has been stuck for so many years watching the lives of those that has came and gone. Has literally ‘entered’ their body to feel what they feel. The setting of this novel was unique although it did feel a bit creepy at times. There is a lot of potential with the family in where I think this novel could have explored more instead of being stuck in the same frame. Yet, at the same time the consistency was a bit wish-washy.

Usually a novel has a beginning, middle and an end. The middle is supposed to have the whole build up of something that needs to overcome however there really isn’t much going on.

The main story line the ghost follows in this novel is of this boy dressed looking woman named George who I really wasn’t interested in at all, her children and Chopin who I think is her friend? He is dying and composes music and the plot just seemed to drag so much.

Overall I need a novel that is actually moving forward as a novel is supposed to be. Plus, characters usually develop and grow however in this one nothing really happens.

2/5 Stars

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