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Paulette Jiles

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Chenneville by Paulette Jiles

    This is my third Jiles book I have read and I have like them all. News of the World was made into a movie starring Tom Hanks. Simon the Fiddler, which I actually liked more was the second novel I read by Jiles. Now Jiles new book Chenneville takes us once again to post civil-war turmoil and into the life of a fascinating character John Chenneville. Here is my book review Chenneville by Paulette Jiles.

    Lyrical Writing

    Jiles is the real deal. Her writing style is mesmerizing. You can feel Chenneville’s pain, the snow, the horse beneath him. She has such a way that brings you full on into the character and the life they are living.

    It’s a shattered nation we find ourselves in, post Civil War and the slow Reconstruction. Lawlessness prevails, and when John Chenneville returns home after recovering from a gruesome head injury near the end of the war, he is confronted with unimaginable grief. His beloved sister, her husband and their 1 year old baby names after him, have been murdered. A senseless murder by a man on a murder for fun spree.


    Chenneville is a powerful character in his reserved presence. Smart and observant, John Chenneville crosses the territory in an effort to kill his sister’s killer. He will encounter a wonderful cast of characters a long the way, make both friends and enemies, trailing the murderer Dodd deep into Texas.

    This is a beautiful story. So raw and true with an insight into the hard truth of love, grief, revenge and acceptance.

    *****Five Stars for Chenneville by Paulette Jiles.

    Thank you for reading my book review Chenneville by Paulette Jiles. Read last week’s review The Art Thief by Michael Finkel.

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    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review News of the World by Paulette Jiles

    I reviewed Jiles novel Simon the Fiddler last week, and finally got my hands on News of the World after being on the library waitlist for months. I’m happy to say it was worth the wait. Not sure why I had never read it before. Here is my book review News of the World by Paulette Jiles

    I haven’t seen the movie, but it was hard to read the book without seeing Tom Hanks (one of my favorite actors – well isn’t he everyone’s favorite?) in the roll of Captain Jefferson Kidd. It’s 1870 and Kidd, going on 70 years (old for the era) earns his living in northern Texas going from town to town reading the world news to residents hungry for news.

    It’s definitely the wild west with danger, bandits, thieves, rapists and murderers lurking in every town. But Kidd enjoys his solitary existence, though often pines for his deceased wife.

    Then while stopping in Wichita Falls, Kidd is asked to transport a young orphan back to her relatives in San Antonio. Johanna has been living among the Kiowa for four years and has adopted the Kiowa ways and language. She is frightened and has no interest in leaving her Kiowa family.

    This beautifully written book takes the Captain and Johanna on a 400 mile journey, escaping bandits, Indians, and desolate landscape to arrive in San Antonio to a less than welcoming aunt and uncle, Johanna’s only relatives.

    The journey Johanna and the Captain have undertaken is more than crossing 400 miles…it is also crossing the bounds of trust, loneliness, honor and love. Finding hope and a new life can come in the most unexpected places, for a young girl and an old man.

    I hope you enjoyed by Book Review News of the World by Paulette Jiles.

    *****Five stars for News of the World by Paulette Jiles.

    Read last week’s review of Simon the Fiddler

    My current read The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

    See this week’s top performing pin here Tubac, Bisbee Tombstone Day Trip from Tucson

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    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Simon the Fiddler by Paulette Jiles

    Reading Wednesday

    Recently Jiles book News of the World has gained popularity again, due to the movie starring Tom Hanks. I am actually reading News of the World now. But before I started it, I read Jiles more recent book, Simon the Fiddler. Here is my book review Simon the Fiddler.

    If you have read News of the World, then you have already met Simon. He appears in that book as well. Jiles has said that in writing News of the World she became captivated with the idea of Simon and so pursued a novel just about him. I’m glad she did.

    We meet Simon in 1865 as the long Civil War is coming to a close and the “United” States is in turmoil. Simon has managed to stay out of the war through out most of it, but as the Confederates are surrendering, Simon is conscripted into a regimental band.

    Simon meets three other musicians and they are commissioned to play for officers of both sides of the war at an elegant party. Here is when Simon will first lay his eyes on his future – the beautiful young, indentured governess Doris Dillon from Ireland.

    Jiles “spare and lilting” style takes the reader right into the Texas heat, the musicians pain, the indentured servants turmoil and the post-civil war chaos. It’s a exquisitely written page turner as we root for Simon and Doris and fear for them as well. I hope you enjoyed my book review Simon the Fiddler by Paulette Jiles

    *****Five stars for Simon the Fiddler

    Read last week’s review The Lady and the Unicorn

    My current read News of the World

    See this week’s top performing pin Flora of the Desert here

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