My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars
In moments of extreme conceit and hubris, sometimes, things click with me and I become them. A pair of dragonfly wings catch my eyes and I decide that’s what I’d be if I were a pair of dragonfly wings. Not a vein different, not a vein prettier. That’s how A Corner of White clicked with me.
Other people blinked at regular intervals, but not Belle. Now and then her eyes would go into a flying panic where she’d blink and blink to catch up.
Unfortunately, I’d be a trying book and it’d take heck of perseverance to be my true readership. The problem with A Corner of White is that its what it says it is. An exploration of worlds and characters; nothing, zilch, nada beyond that. Also Unfortunately, I’m not a very patient person. So while this book clicked with me, and made me feel at home in its pages, the entertainment hydraulics certainly weren’t functioning. Page by page, I observed Madeleine, her mother, Elliot; and the levels of my engrossment mitigated, even as I laughed thoughtfully at the epistles being passed between our two protagonists.
There’s a certain charm to Jaclyn Moriarty‘s words that had me eager to dress up and parade around as her books. Be it the world of Cambridge or the Kingdom of Cello, she made it magical. Trivial, pesky acts of lives had a flair of surrealism in her books. Snarfing down cakes read akin to being enraptured in fae music. Acts of hooliganism were the works of elves at midnight. A little girl blinking could bring down a rain of fairy dust. It was terrible and fascinating how magic could be brought back in our worlds if only Moriarty were the hand writing our stories. That’s how it clicked with me; that’s why I have no qualms about being covered in rainbows and shrubs(I wouldn’t ordinarily, either).
The story and plot exist for the first few chapters, to help us get involved in the book and characters. Later on, plot devices are abandoned in the middle like pigeon carcasses, and storylines are lost and left hanging. After half the book, the languid story(or lack of it) became somnolent albeit it was like waking up from a satiating, beautiful dream. One of those that it hurts to wake up from. They do serve their purpose, though, and get you acquainted with the characters. Quirky, realized and intriguing characters. And not just the protagonists- the side characters had their own share and developments in the book. The wacky adults, the pensive children, and the dreams that burst at the prick of reality…
Far be it from me to actually try and give you an account of the happenings and non-happenings of the book, however. I’d just rather explain the rating and my uneasiness at the rating. See, I have a benevolent nature, when it comes to stars and generally, I give it aplenty. Even now, my hand strays and awards the sycophantic half star. The ‘thing’ being, as I refer to it, the haphazard and slapdash nature of the ending. Throughout the 400 exact pages, we had no story, the threads had been snipped off, and gone for good. But at the end, J. Moriarty seems to have gathered all the cut-offs and joined them end by end stretch it into the next, or so methinks. It’s casual and feels like an afterthought.
Overall, this book saddened me by being slow and so to cite a friend of mine who is like a JM character herself,
My book is not my clone. Your argument is invalid.
But guess who’s already ordered the whole Ashbury/Brookfield collection after hours and hours of scouring the net and finally getting them for half their original prices. Yeah right, babe! That’s me!