Review: Flesh and Grass by Libby Cone

Filed in Review , The Eclectic Lover Posted on March 4, 2010 @ 8:46 am 0 comments

Format Read: ebook

Release Date: February 4, 2010
Publisher: Amazon
Formats Available: ebook
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Book websiteAmazon

Book Blurb:
Seventeenth-century Holland is a major power with a large, wealthy middle class built on spices and slavery. Dutch schemes to colonize the New World attract few interested parties, but Pieter Cornelissoon Boom, an early Mennonite with a dream of communal living, brings a few families to Delaware Bay in 1663. Their “Little Common-wealth” is just getting started when the bloody economic rivalry between Holland and England unleashes violence on the coast of Delaware. The Nieuw Netherland colonies swing between Dutch and English ownership in a series of Anglo-Dutch wars. Cornelis, Boom’s blind son, tells the story of the community (based loosely on the ill-fated Delaware settlement of Pieter Plockhoy) in its various forms of existence, relying on his exquisite memory of scent.

My Thoughts:

The story begins with the adult Cornelis in Germantown, Pennsylvania Colony in 1699. He begins telling the tale of how his family came to move from Amsterdam to Niew Netherland years before and all that happened to them once they arrived. They wanted to form a community of people with the same religious beliefs on their own land and have their businesses be profitable. Wars between the colonial powers interfered with these plans.
The seventeenth century style of spelling and capitalization helps set the scene. I found the descriptions of colonial life very interesting. I enjoyed reading about the different occupations and skills of the colonists. Cornelis was a hose maker and made plain and fancy hose that he sold. His mother and aunt were both weavers. The details of the meetings that were held and the work that was done to build the community was quite absorbing.
Cornelis was quite an intriguing character. His blindness makes him notice scents more and he associates certain aromas with people or events in his life. Some were good memories while others were so bad that he had to avoid them or risk becoming sick. The book covers many years starting when Cornelis was a child. Over the years you can see him mature as his experiences shape him. I was so into the story that the end of the book surprised me. I pressed the button to turn the page and there wasn’t another page.
The battery of my Sony Reader ran down while I was reading the ebook, and rather than waiting a few hours for it to recharge, I continued reading on my laptop. Once I started the book, I just had to continue reading all the way through! The story just draws you in and won’t let you go. I would recommend Flesh and Grass to anyone that enjoys reading historical fiction of the colonial period.

I give Flesh and Grass 4 of 5 Bookies.

***FTC Disclaimer: Most books reviewed on this site have been provided free of charge by the publisher, author or publicist. Some books we have purchased with our own money and will be noted as such. Any links to places to purchase books are provided as a convenience, and do not serve as an endorsement by this blog. All reviews are the true and honest opinion of the blogger reviewing the book. The method of acquiring the book does not have a bearing on the content of the review.

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