My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Darrel once read to Mother the tale of a girl in France who heard angel voices telling her to save her people from the English. She dressed as a man and spoke with fire and eloquence. She raised an army and defeated the invaders, all for the love of her motherland. For her courage and her passion, she later burned to death, called a witch and heretic. Do I love you less than she loved soil?
I have no words to save you.
I'll be honest, when I read the blurb for this book, I did not imagine it as I read it. To say the blurb and cover are misleading would be an understatement!
This is the story of Judith Finch, who disappeared one day, never to be scene until one day she came back. Mute. The reason is shrouded in secrecy.
Instead of being welcomed with open arms by her family and community she is ostracized. The fact that she has survived does not matter, the question on everyone's lips: whether or not she is still pure. Because she is mute she cannot give them an answer, and by default she becomes lower than the lowest of creatures.
She watches silently on the sidelines as everyone she grew up with lives a full life. No one will speak to her, no one even acknowledges her.
Who will help me? Why does everyone presume that I, as damaged merchandise, forfeit any claim to happiness? That I expect nothing, have no ambitions or longings of my own? When was it agreed that my lot would be to gladly serve as prop and a crutch for others who are whole.
Now don't get me wrong, Judith never complains, she is the most selfless and caring person I have ever read. Her unconditional love for her mother and brother is amazing! But she never sees herself as worthy, rightly so, because no one ever gives her reason to. She is no longer a person, because of her inability to speak.
What did I expect?
A modern day novel about a girl who was kidnapped and then later found broken but she would persevere, finding love and healing.
What did I get?
An historical novel. (The century, year is unclear)
A story written in lyrical prose. In fact it was so lyrical I thought I was reading poetry.
A darkly depressing novel.
Despite being mislead, I can't give this book less than 5 stars.
Because this book moved me, it made me feel deeply. I actually texted Skank (Soraya Naomi) and asked if it is possible to feel angst while reading such lyrical prose? Off course she replied, yes!
This is definitely a darker read, with some thriller aspects. Now I'd like to add that this is not a religious book, but because of the time period and kind of community that Judith is from, religion does play a huge part in this story. Unfortunately it does not play in favour of Judith's existence.
Note: 1. Yes this is a love story, although the "romance" is secondary.
2. My casting, this is the closest to the Judith I see in my head