The lollipop shoes by Joanne Harris

Book :
The Lollipop Shoes (Published as The girl with no shadow in the US)
Author: Joanne Harris

ISBN: 978-0-385-60948-7
Publisher : Transworld
Pages: 459

My rating : 5/5

Synopsis from Goodreads
Since she was a little girl, the wind has dictated every move Vianne Rocher has made, buffeting her from place to place, from the small French village of Lansquenet-sous-Tannes to the crowded streets of Paris. Cloaked in a new identity, that of widow Yanne Charbonneau, she opens a chocolaterie on a small Montmartre street, determined to still the wind at last and keep her daughters, Anouk and the baby, Rosette, safe. Her new home above the chocolate shop offers calm and quiet: no red sachets hang by the door; no sparks of magic fill the air; no Indian skirts with bells hang in her closet. Conformity brings with it anonymity and peace. There is even Thierry, the stolid businessman who wants to take care of Yanne and the children. On the cusp of adolescence, an increasingly rebellious and restless Anouk does not understand. But soon the weather turns . . . and into their lives blows the charming and enigmatic Zozie de l’Alba. And everything begins to change.

My Thoughts

I started this book with a lot of expectations and i am happy to report that I enjoyed it thoroughly. Joanne Harris’s Lollipop shoes is like dark,creamy chocolate with a hint of spice-totally heady and difficult to resist. Narrated from three POVs(Yanne, Anouk and Zozie), the narrative flows seamlessly. I loved how Joanne let a huge chunk of the narrative be told from Zozie’s perspective- I don’t really think i have read too many novels that have been narrated from the Villain’s point of view.Also,even the minor characters seemed etched out and the writing exceptionally vivid.Despite being a sequel to Chocolat, this one reads like a stand-alone book.I don’t think not reading the first book before tackling his one matters much.

The spells,totems,fables and stories about faeries and witches that Zozie and Yanne mention make the book more exotic and fascinating.It’s no secret that I am a huge fan of magic realism-Joanne’s book is a fine specimen of that genre.The writing is measured,yet intimate and warm,just like the characters in the book. There is something dangerously appealing about a slinky,chameleon-like villain and I loved Zozie’s character the most(even more than Anouk and Yanne.). The bullying and name-calling that goes on in schools also forms a huge part of the story -atleast when the narration is done from the perspective of the eleven year-old Anouk.

Joanne’s writing is breathtaking and flows beautifully.This has to be one of the best books I have read in a long, long time and I don’t think I can rave enough about it. People who are fascinated with the art of chocolate-making will love the details that Joanne shares with us and the book is about good food as much as it is about anything else.

Sample some of her writing ..

“That red-orange flare as the fire spread ,leaping and tumbling and sommersaulting like an evil acrobat from a rail of scarves to a trapeze of dreamcatchers and finally to a stack of books.”

“The problem is me.I just dont match.I’m the wrong shape,somehow the wrong colour.I like teh wrong books.I watch the wrong films in secret.I’m different whether they like it or not and I sont see why i should pretend otherwise.”

Overall,an awesome book I’ll recommend to lovers of good fiction.A full 5 on 5 from me.I am going to hunt down and read every single book written by this incredibly talented lady.

20 thoughts on “The lollipop shoes by Joanne Harris

  1. So, this one is set in Paris? I wonder how she represents Paris, which is a city I wouldn't necessarily associate with her writing. I'm curious…


  2. I have to read Chocolat and then this one. Lovely review.

    **Joanne Harris's Lollipop shoes is like dark,creamy chocolate with a hint of spice-totally heady and difficult to resist** – Now this is definitely irresistible, my dear!!

    Love that line šŸ™‚
    PS – were you able to find Like Water for Chocolate. Trust me you will like it… at least I am hoping you will šŸ™‚


  3. Emeire..Joanne focuses more on the dark aspects of France- sometimes i even felt like she doesn't like Paris too much.Does she write more about other places ?

    A..Thanks!You made my day with that comment.

    Misha.. I dont know if this one's like chocolat,but is a lovely read anyway.

    Vibha..Thanks !!! thats such a sweet thing to say .

    Madhu..Ooohh..Congo..Love that book!.

    Avdi.. so pen your thoughts after you read it .

    Veens.. Thanks a zillion!Read this one -its sooper fun !


  4. wow! sounds like a must-read! thanks for the awesome review! šŸ™‚

    wow.. the book is narrated also from the villain's perspective.. that's something new!

    i love chocolate and am on the look-out for food-fiction books. this one sounds like a good one to pick up. but i m not sure if i'd like the magic realism part.


  5. Vaishnavi..Not yet! But its on the cards.I picked up another book by her- a short story collection named jigs and reels.Loving it. I saw Gentleman and players at the library and decided not to pick it! šŸ˜¦


  6. Ciao and best wishes for 2011, I am back at last catching up on so much that I missed while I was away from the blogsphere! Thankyou for comments you left on LindyLouMac's Book Reviews while I was absent.

    I am delighted that you have discovered that Joanne Harris is a very talented writer. I enjoy her writing very much.


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