A Thousand Paper Birds by Tor Udall

 

A Thousand Paper Birds by [Udall, Tor]

Bloomsbury Circus 15th June 2017

Origami, grief and the beautiful Kew Gardens are the premise of this mesmerising story.

Audrey,  bereft after 3 miscarriages apparently dead either by suicide or an accident.

Jonah, her husband, is bereft and lost in grief wondering why his wife died.

Chloe,  is haunted by an incident she believes was her fault and obsessed with origami birds

Harry, a Kew gardener is  intent on saving endangered plants.

Milly, a little girl, who roams Kew Gardens apparently homeless and parentless.

Four characters each unknowingly bound together by tragedy.

Sounds like a gloomy story and yes it is but is also a magical story, in fact a love story.

When Jonah meets Chloe he is still in the midst of grieving for his wife, seeking comfort, for all the wrong reasons. Chloe, resolutely single fleeing from one boyfriend to another slowly realises that she loves Jonah but knows that Jonah is incapable of reciprocating, as he fights his demons. Will they or won’t they find each other and have the happy ever after.

Intertwined is the story of Harry, the gardener and Milly the little girl. We assume that Harry is her father, but is she? We also assume that that Audrey and Harry had some form of affair after Chloe discovers Audrey’s diaries.

Based on these assumptions the author takes us on a mesmerising, lyrical roller coaster ride, with beautifully portrayed characters, and an ambitious storyline with Kew Gardens the shining star.

You will instantly fall in love with Milly, grow impatient with Jonah as he struggles to make sense of his life and hope that Chloe finds happiness and peace. You will find yourself as I did desperate to revisit Kew Gardens and see what Milly sees, and bask in the beauty of the plants and landscape so revered by Harry.

I absolutely adored this novel. It is a story that will stay with you long after the last page has been turned and the book closed.

Reminiscent of Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones this book will delight all who read it.

Just stunning.

Thank you to Netgalley and Bloomsbury for the opportunity to read and review

 

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