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Topic: Burning Bright by Tracy Chevalier

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Subject: Burning Bright by Tracy Chevalier
Date Posted: 10/4/2007 10:19 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,608
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Anyone read it?  I finished it last night.  Beautiful book!  At first it was a bit aimless.  But then it sort of snuck up on me and I got sucked in.

It's set in the early 1790s.  A family who has had a tragedy recently moves from the country to London to get work with John Astley's circus.  Astley gives Thomas Kellaway some work and a home--which is next door to the poet, William Blake.

It centers primarily around the Kellaways and the Butterfields--from their children's point of view.  London is not a very pretty place if you don't have money.  The circus is the one thing that the people look forward to (if they can afford to go)

There is a political under current to the story.  Londoners is terrified that the French Revolution will spill over to their shores.  People begin to talk of patriotism and loyalty to the crown.  Suspicions rise between neighbors and friends.

I never thought about it but I think this might have been an edgy time for England.  They recently lost the American colonies and then revolution fomented in France. 

Anyway, it was an interesting read.  Chevalier is a good story teller. 

Date Posted: 10/5/2007 1:00 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,513
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No, but I saw her speak a couple of years ago, and I have it on my reminder list. 

Date Posted: 10/6/2007 6:42 AM ET
Member Since: 6/24/2007
Posts: 112
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It's very high on my TBR pile.  I've read all her other books and really enjoyed them.  Girl With a Pearl Earring is in my top 10 of all time favs.

Date Posted: 10/6/2007 12:35 PM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2005
Posts: 456
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I couldn't get into this, so returned it to the library pretty quickly.    If I ever run out of books to read, perhaps I'll give it a whirl again based on your comments, Melody.

Date Posted: 10/6/2007 10:09 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,608
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Marci, it did start a little slow and at first seemed vague--like "what's the point here?"  But, it does get alot better.