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Five Quarters of the Orange

Five Quarters of the Orange - Joanne Harris Five quarters of the Orange by Janne Harris is one of those novels that will stay with you long after you have turned the last page.

4.5 Star Rating

Set in a small town in rural France during the the Second World War, this novel tells the story of a young girl by the name Framboise Dartigen and how during the occupation of the town this young girl befriends a German Soldier and what appears to be a harmless friendship turns into something which both her family and the town will never forget for years to come.

The story is extremely well told and I loved how Harris writes in two time periods without confusing the reader, one takes place in the present day and concentrates on the widowed Fromboise and the other story takes place in the past when the children are young and we learn through the eyes of Framboise what happened in Les Laveuses. This is not a novel about the Second World War and does not focus on facts or figures or the details of history that some people might prefer, for me I have read a lot of books on the history of the war and I love my history books but this book tells a story all its own where the characters and the setting give the reader a sense of time and place and I found this a very atmospheric novel that I just wanted to finish in one go.
The writing is beautiful and while the first 100 pages are slow paced there is always a sense from the author's writing that she is building you up for a great story.

We were always raised to keep things to ourselves. It isn't a habit which can be easily broken

I loved so much about this book and really wish I had read it as a book club read as there is so much to discuss here. Its one of those books that you find out more about once you finish it when you think over all its twists and turns.