Book recommendation: The Orphan's Tales: In The Night-Garden
05 September 2008

This is the first in a hopefully, semi-regular series of brief book overviews. Unless noted, I will not give away any plot elements unless noted a priori.

The Orphan’s Tales: In the Night-Garder is the first of a two volume series of fairy-tales written by Catherynne Valente. This book was recommened to Anne and I at this wonderful (nerd) bookstore in Berkeley, called The Other Change of Hobbit. The worker there said that this would be a wonderful book for us both to read, discuss and enjoy.

The first volume consists of two main story-lines, however, within each, interesting stories unveil themselves, much like a russian nested doll set. At first, I found keeping my place in the “stack” confusing, for at times the author does delve quite deep into the “story within a story within a story” idea. However, after the first 100 pages, I was unable to put the book down, as each tale weaved itself with the others, creating an intricate, interrelated story arc. By the end, I found myself ripping through page after page, trying to reach the end and then frantically running to buy the second volume. The quality of writing is not the best; however, the story is unique and captivating and well worth the time to read.