High on the cliffs near Dover, the Silver family is reeling from the loss of Lily, mother of twins Eliot and Miranda, and beloved wife of Luc.
Miranda misses her with particular intensity. Their mazy, capricious house belonged to her mother's ancestors, and to Miranda, newly attuned to spirits, newly hungry for chalk, it seems they have never left.
Forcing apples to grow in winter, revealing and concealing secret floors, the house is fiercely possessive of young Miranda.
Joining voices with her brother and her best friend Ore, it tells her story: haunting in every sense, and a spine-tingling tribute to the power of magic, myth and memory.
Miri I conjure you...'Superbly atmospheric. The dark tones of Poe in her haunting have the elasticity of Haruki Murakami's surreal mental landscapes' - "Independent". 'The kind of prose that creeps off the page, crawls up the spine and burrows deep into the reader's paralysed mind' - "Daily Mail". '"White is for Witching" should establish Oyeyemi as an ambitious voice in modern macabre; master of the light, lyrical touch and dark, half-hinted suggestion' - "The Times". 'Entrancing' - "TLS". 'Helen Oyeyemi was a literary prodigy. Now, she is ready to make the transition from wunderkind to established author.
Remarkable' - "Daily Telegraph".
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 192 pages
- Publisher: Pan Macmillan
- Publication Date: 02/04/2010
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780330458153
Showing 1 - 1 of 1 reviews.
Review by mrn945
This was a very different ghost story.First, I'm not sure if it was a ghost story, or a book about individuals with mental disorders. Granted, it may not matter - but here are the facts. Once upon a time, a family of four lived in a lovely old house in Dover, England. The mother was vivacious and adventurous, the father content, the twins beautiful and bright. Of course, things are not always as they appear.Early on in the book, the mother dies. This sparks a series of emotional and mental events in both of the twins which accumulate in the daughters final descent into madness. Or ghostly possession, which ever you prefer.The daughter, Miranda, has pica - a disorder which makes her eat unconventional things - like plastic and chalk. The disease, we hear, is common in her family. Or is it? Perhaps it's the house which cases the disease, not genetics.The house plays a rather interesting role in the novel. It is treated like a character unto itself. A devious, dangerous, and possibly lying character, but a character nonetheless. To be honest, the parts where the house speaks sent shivers down my spine. I don't know if it was the tone the house spoke in, or the idea of a house controlling a family but it was a very effective tool.The second part of the story which was incredibly interesting was the way it was written. The flow in the novel was very unique. At the beginning, I was a little unnerved by the way the novel would switch so quickly from one voice to another with literally a single word. However, as I started reading more, the device made more and more sense.This was a unique and special novel. Was it unnerving? Yes. Was it engrossing? Yes. At the end of the day, I would wholly recommend this book to anyone wanting something a little different to read.