Read. This. Book.

Remarkable CreaturesRemarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier

Take one passionate writer of historical fiction and fan of strong female characters and pair her up with Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier and you will create pure bliss. I adored this book! The writing is strong and honest and suggestive of the time and I was fascinated to learn how two “spare parts” (spinster women) made such a huge difference in the late 1800s’ studies of paleontology. As a passionate beach comber myself I completely understand Mary Anning and Elizabeth Philpot’s compulsion to scour their beach every day for some crumb of ancient history. This book has me wanting to book a ticket to Lyme Regis, as well as to read more about these two incredible women.

My only gripe about this book is that I finished it before my long flight from North Carolina home was complete. But I re-read bits — the opening line is one to study! — and woolgathered about these women and their lives and next thing I knew, we were touching down in Seattle. Remarkable Creatures is a remarkable book!

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No Responses to “Read. This. Book.”

  1. Jeannine Atkins

    I loved this book, too, and maybe you were lucky to have that time to reread. You’ve made me want to go take another look at the first sentence — and maybe I’ll get hooked back in. I felt lucky to read it near the ocean this summer.

  2. Faith E. Hough

    I loved Girl with a Pearl Earring and was hoping this one would be spectacular, too…but I suppose I was waiting to hear the opinion of someone who’d read it before going out and buying it. So, thanks! (I’m grabbing the car keys. 😉

  3. Grier Jewell

    Thanks for the recommendation! I just finished reading it. It reminded me a lot of Charles and Emma in the way that ideas about the natural world get people’s religious beliefs in a knot. Makes me sigh just to read how women were treated, which is really not that different from today. People just smell better these days and wear fewer clothes, but men are still deferred to, people are still judged by appearances and some are still rebelling against the concept of evolution. I’d love to see a children’s book that’s just about Mary Anning and her monsters in the cliffs.