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Ok. I finally finished it. *slight spoilers* Camilla Send a noteboard - 28/11/2010 11:22:29 AM
And I liked it, but not as much as Cloud Atlas.

School-yard bullies, questions of reputation, and how to avoid being beaten up are common themes of literature involving adolescents. So Mitchell's narrator has to struggle with extra problems: a stutter, and a penchant for writing poetry, both of which, if discovered, will seriously ruin Jason's social standing. As he struggles with these issues, he meets some unusual people who challenge his way of thinking and force/help him to become more assertive.

I like the book much better now, having read the ending, than I did half-way through. It was surprisingly stressful to read.

As with Cloud Atlas, Mitchell's interest in language can be seen in this book. He plays with teen slang and various accents, using them to comment on society in subtle ways. The use of a child as narrator also allows him to question social mores in a more direct manner than he could have done with a less naive character. Jason's comments are frequently delightful, although occasionally they make you wonder whether a 13 year old would say or even think in that way.

I liked the language in general, but it get a little tiresome at times, I felt. OR mixed with the brands he kept dropping. It might do more for someone who remembers Britain in 1982. I was born, in Norway, that year, so it is a little outside my experience.

The setting feels very authentic, and Mitchell put a lot of effort into ensuring that the songs, TV shows and food referenced fit perfectly into the era. There is a real feeling of stepping back into the Cold War past.

I loved the kicks at Thatcher (unsurprisingly). The political moments were among the strongest in the book (I include the gypsies in the political moments).

Overall, Black Swan Green is a very enjoyable, sometimes disturbing, often moving slice of life. It reminds us that the nostalgia we often feel for our younger days can be misplaced, as teenage years are not necessarily simpler or more charming. But it also encourages us to remember the people whose influence shaped our futures and helped us to become the people we are today.

Indeed. I really, really, really liked how Eva popped in to fix things. And how no fuss was made.
structured procrastinator
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Black Swan Green by David Mitchell: not a scary book. - 15/08/2010 04:34:30 PM 4801 Views
Not scary? - 15/08/2010 07:09:26 PM 1064 Views
That was it. - 15/08/2010 10:39:40 PM 1058 Views
The cover looks nice - 15/08/2010 07:34:44 PM 1062 Views
It's an appropriate cover. - 15/08/2010 10:54:48 PM 1086 Views
I like David Mitchell. But this is definately my least favourite of his works. *NM* - 15/08/2010 10:14:39 PM 585 Views
Why? *NM* - 15/08/2010 10:26:45 PM 535 Views
I think it's a bit too focused if that makes sense. - 15/08/2010 10:29:11 PM 984 Views
I think that's half the point. - 15/08/2010 10:42:58 PM 1247 Views
He's brilliant. Also Ghostwritten is AMAZING. I buy it for my friends! *NM* - 15/08/2010 10:44:43 PM 574 Views
Found this at the local second hand store for 4 euros. - 17/08/2010 08:37:42 PM 1034 Views
Oooh, nice. - 17/08/2010 08:42:10 PM 1135 Views
I'm about half-way through it - 01/11/2010 02:14:23 PM 1049 Views
Ok. I finally finished it. *slight spoilers* - 28/11/2010 11:22:29 AM 1218 Views

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