A whimsical tale of family and love which may be one of my top ten books of 2017

November 16, 2017

The Strange & Beautiful Sorrows Of Ava Lavender by Lesyle Walton

Rating: 5 stars



This book is one of the most beautiful stories I have ever read. It is perhaps one of the most unusual but wonderfully crafted tales that will remain with me for some time to come. It is perhaps one of the easiest 5-star ratings I have given in some time and will absolutely be one of the books I recommend to people moving forward. 

This book reminded me of watching movies like Big Fish and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, tales that may contain strange and fascinating characters who live outwith the norms of society but who at heart are just normal people with wonderful stories to share. This book is the story of young Ava Lavender, a girl who was born with wings. Through her life, people are scared, awed and fascinated by her. Is she girl, bird or angel? Either way, this is Ava's story and not just her story but the story of all the women in her family from her great-grandmother who leaves France in 1914 to live in Manhattan with her husband through to her grandmother and her strange collection of siblings to Viviane the mother of Ava and her love affair with the boy in her town that will give her the strange children who will change her life.

This book just sucked me in whole. The writing is so beautiful, it is clear that the world is not quite as we know it. There are strands of reality mixed with the magical and fantastical. The way that all of the characters from the Roux family continue to pop in and out of the narrative until we fall in love with them all so much it feels a real wrench when you finish this book. 

I could see this book so clearly in my mind. The writing just evoked the whole town where Ava and her family live so well. The strange and unusual people who live in the small town are all so unique and as the story moves along they become so intrinsically a part of this story that the community forms such a heartwarming place for our story to unfold. The way they all pull together when Ava and her family need them and help them heal is just wonderful. 

This book has to be made into a movie, that this story should not be made available to the wider world would be a crime. I can see this clearly on the big screen and it is a story that needs to be told. Absolutely this is the one book I badly want to see adapted. 

Definitely one of my top reads of this year and a new favourite book for me.

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