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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Bellman and Black by Diane Setterfield

Summary on Goodreads.

NetGalley provided me with a free copy of this book.

I was really into the story at the beginning as it begins with William when he was 10 and what he and his friends did that, much later on, changed their lives.

I loved William’s character at the beginning because he was a savvy business man who had no particular education, raised from poverty and became somebody. Unfortunately, tragedy stroke and what was going to be a very happy and prosperous life, turned out to be just… prosperous.

The story is catalogued under ‘horror’ and I don’t know why. There was nothing horrific in it, at least not for me.

Setterfield has a writing cadence that I enjoyed throughout the first part of the book. It was just the second part, when we get into the actual business of Bellman and Black, that the story became monotonous.

The first part of the book was about setting William’s character and life to show us why he went into business with Black. Why, actually? I really don’t know. Well, I think I know, but I am not sure. It all has to do with rooks, or ravens, or owls… or beautiful black birds.

Setterfield never really says what this business was. When William made the pact with Black, I just guessed I knew what it was because, well, nothing else could have been. But it is really not clear or explained. That doesn’t take away from the story, though. It’s just that, personally, I wanted the confirmation of what really was going on rather than just ‘thinking’ that I knew.

The book is also catalogued under historical fiction; I can’t explain why here because it would give the story away, but it was interesting reading about how that particular business emerged.

I enjoyed Setterfield’s writing because I managed to read the second part of the book as droning as it was. But overall, this is an interesting story that could’ve been shorter, and that I will always remember.