Saturday, November 3, 2012

Peaches for Father Francis; Joanne Harris

 
Author:  Joanne Harris
Publication Year: 2012
Publisher: Viking
Edition: eGalley
Setting: France
Source: NetGalley
Date Completed: October/2012
Rating: 4/5 
Recommend: yes

Peaches for Father Francis reintroduces readers and movie goers to Vianne Roche the lovable, magical former candy shop owner who charmed so many in Chocolat over 10 years ago.

In this story Vianne is living with Roux and her daughters 15 year old, Anouk,  and Rosette, now 8 years old on a houseboat. She misses her candy shop and yearns for something more.  When a lost letter arrives from the grandson of her friend Armande who has since passed away asking for Vianne's help, she and her girls leave for Lansquenet.  Her former shop had been turned into a school by a group of newcomers to the hamlet who happen to be of Arab descent. These people are not welcomed and are viewed as outsiders. They are treated in much the same way that Vianne had been when she had arrived there years earlier.  When something happens to the school of the Muslim people, rumors have it that Vianne's arch enemy Father Francis may have been involved. Can Vianne help her former nemesis?

This was a story that was fun to read, even though the theme of "tolerance" is a serious subject.  The way the newcomers to this small community were treated seemed to accurately reflect the way many people, often perceived as different, are treated throughout the world. 

There were a lot of flashbacks to the earlier novel which were well written into this novel, as a result the story flowed very well.  I loved the author's depiction of life in a small insular community, and there was even another element of mystery involving Vianne's partner Roux.  Overall the quirky characters, tension among the residents, charm and magic made for and entertaining story.  Although this book was actually book #3 of the series, The Girl With No Shadow was book #2, I didn't feel like I missed anything by not having read that book.

Thanks to the folks at Penguin/Viking for allowing me to read/review this novel.

19 comments:

  1. This title came up at book club Friday. It wasn't selected, but I still hope to read it. I haven't read book 2 either, and am glad to know it's not necessary before continuing the series.

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  2. I haven't read any of the books in this series but it sure does sound like a series I would like.

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  3. I never heard of this book, but it sounds good.

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  4. Oh, I'm so happy to know that you enjoyed this one. It's going on my list.

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  5. I loved Chocolat and didn't even know about the second book. But I've been dying to read this one. Glad to know it's worth it.

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  6. Loved Chocolat and keep hearing great things about this one so I'm moving it up on my list. Thanks for reviewing

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  7. I hadn't heard of these either, thanks, sounds good!

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  8. Terrific review, Diane. I enjoyed Chocolat and also The Girl With No Shadow. This one is on my list. I'm eager to read it.

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  9. I've read Chocolate so would like to read this.

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  10. I would like to read both these books. Thanks Diane!

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  11. I want to read this but still haven't got around to reading Chocolat!

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  12. I would love to read all the books in this series. Nice review!

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  13. I haven't read any of the books in this series, but they sound very interesting. I will add them to my wish list.

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  14. I need to read her other two books that I have had on my own bookshelves for years!!!

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  15. This sounds good! I didn't even know there was a second book.

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  16. I have this one on my list since I enjoyed Chocolat. Glad to see you enjoyed it.

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  17. I loved the first 2 books in the series. I can't wait to read this one!!

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  18. I just read Chocolat for the first time this year and I loved it. I really want to pursue the rest of the series.

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  19. I was wishing for more of Vianne, maybe less of Reynaud's introspection. But I'm very happy that Harris has clearly set us up for a fourth book!

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