Sunday – Reading Day
Today I’ve finished one of the most darling books I’ve read in a while. And sorry, dear English-speaking readers, the book I’m talking about was not (yet) published in English. In fact it only came out in February this year in Germany. However, it’s already a huge success and I totally see why.
I’ve talked about buying this book in my April 19 post. It was a spontaneous purchase, partly because the cover caught my eye, and partly because not one but two sales people in the shop VERY HIGHLY recommendet it to me.
The book is called “Der Pfau” (The Peacock) and is written by Isabel Bogdan. She’s an award winning translator of English books and this is her first novel.
In short, this book is about a group of London investment bankers – 6 guys and their female boss – who have booked a so called team-building seminar in the Scottish highlands, on the grounds of a very nice elderly couple who rent out cottages to tourists/visitors. The group arrives with a trainer and a (female) cook and stay in the larger main building (there are other smaller cottages spread out over the grounds). The buildings are all quite old, well maintained but there’s not their usual luxury that they are used to from their shiny London condos.
Other protagonists of the book are the maid, the caretaker/gardener, a goose, the owner’s dogs, the dog of the female banker boss and a group of peacocks that belong to the couple and live on the estate. One of the peacocks has gone a bit crazy though and attacks everything that is blue.
That very peacock sets off events that no one has seen coming. And it’s hilarious!!! That book is so well written, so full of wit, fine irony and wonderful story-telling, that I couldn’t put it down. I’ve read many comments who say that it’s written with a great sense of very typical British humor and I can only agree. And that by a German.
The unique thing about is: there’s no direct speech, only indirect. Example: It’s not like “do you want a coup of tea”, Hanna asked. “Yes that would be fine”, Andrew answerd – but like Hanna asked Andrew if he wanted another coup of tea and Andrew said that would be fine. I’ve never read a book that was written this way and I’ve gotta say that I loved it very much. I wouldn’t say that works for all books all the time. By far not! But here, with this story and the way the author tells it, it’s PERFECT.
I love that book so so so much! Loved all the different characters and how the story developed, and how – by keeping things to yourself rather than talk about them – can influence situations dramatically :-D.
If that book will ever be available in English, I’ll let you know.
And no, I won’t post the link to Amazon because I don’t support buying books from Amazon. If you want to buy a real book (not an ebook), support your local book shop. They need every support they can get!
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