Catherine the Great
Robert K. Massie
|Catherine and I (liz) even|
have the same hips!
|Robert K. Massie|
I wasn't familiar with Carol Birch's writing, but when one of the Doubleday editors suggested that Jamrach's Menagerie could contend for the Man Booker Prize, my spidey sense tingled, if you know what I mean. After reading the book I understood the editor's excitement, and indeed Jamrach's Menagerie made the short list for the Man Booker Prize.
Why I love this book:
- Exotic animals play a large part in the story, from the tiger that almost eats the young hero Jaffy to the menagerie he tends for Jamrach and the dragon he travels around the world to capture.
- A great seafaring novel (or movie, for that matter) really can't be beaten.
- Carol Birch creates characters that would make Dickens jealous.
- Whaling culture. I love it.
- The 19th Century age of adventure and discovery--just imagine what it was like aboard the Beagle with Darwin. The world is fresher than Gianna and full of natural wonder, with no boundaries (also like Gianna).