- Title: The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam
- Author: Lauren Liebenberg
- ISBN: 9781844084975
- Page: 495
- Format: Paperback
Rhodesia a place of great beauty, but also of terrible, man made, tragedy The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam is, above all else, a magical evocation of childhood at times laugh out loud funny, at others heartbreakingly sad It tells the story of two young sisters, Nyree and Cia O Callohan, who live on a remote farm in the East of what was Rhodesia in theRhodesia a place of great beauty, but also of terrible, man made, tragedy The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam is, above all else, a magical evocation of childhood at times laugh out loud funny, at others heartbreakingly sad It tells the story of two young sisters, Nyree and Cia O Callohan, who live on a remote farm in the East of what was Rhodesia in the late 1970s Beneath the dripping vines of the Vumba rainforest, and under the tutelage of their heretical grandfather, Oupa, theirs is a seductive world laced with African paganism, bastardised Catholicism and the lore of the Brothers Grimm until their idyll is shattered forever by their orphaned cousin, Ronin His arrival at the farm sets in motion a chain of events that result in tragedy and the loss of innocence.
Recent Comments "The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam"
It is the 1970s in eastern Rhodesia. Eight year old Nyree lives with her younger sister Cia, her mother and grandfather on a remote farm. Her father, under compulsory conscription of white men, is away fighting the Terrs in the civil war. Nyree and her sister create a world of magic and imagination combining the best parts of their Catholic upbringing, fairy tales and African magic and ritual. It is marvellous reading what these two wee girls get up to and how they make the most mundane surround [...]
Beautiful, poignant, vibrant, sad, lyrical, evocative and moving. Myth and superstition is beautifully integrated into 'modern' life as cultures and beliefs, old and new co-exist peacefully and mostly harmoniously. But the political wolf stalks at the gate!Overflowing with metaphor this novel provides the reader with an emotional and touching view into the micro world of the main characters and parallels their experiences with the macrocosm of a very unstable and dangerous Africa.Reading this no [...]
Extremely 'lush' writing which creates a child's view of an Africa which no longer exists politically. Well drawn eccentric characters, especially the grandfather. Underlying sense of menace and evil of the boy. Intriguing title which symbolises the child's obsessional delight in the sensual.
It is an unsettling book.but captures a history that is now gone but nontheless real and a history I understand. I really recommend it.
Rhodesia imploding, the perspective of half-wild bush children on a farm that is dessicating in the heartless climate, an interloper child who tortures animals and is damaged goods, but plays nicely with adults. Lots of good meat to hang a story on but it somehow fails to move me.The book has a strongly biographical feel, but the author has written what I presume is a part-memoir of her own childhood with a fictional mount, and I'm not sure she pulls this off. The hybrid tribalbelife-child-mytho [...]
Interesting, and I'm not sure what to make of this. As the book opens, the protagonist, Nyree, is a young girl living with her family in Rhodesia. Her father fights 'terrs', but the country is months away from black majority rule and an end to their colonialist lives.Nyree's sister, Cia, is her playmate and best friend; the two are relatively isolated but not short on imagination. When their cousin Ronin comes to stay, though, he acts as a wrench thrown into their happy childhood.And -- nope. St [...]
I picked up this book, intrigued by its title: The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam by Lauren Liebenberg. I felt drawn in by the premise, (the book is set in Rhodesia in the late 1970s, just before it becomes the Zimbabwe we know today) where two girls live in a magical, innocent, yet dangerous world.This book was shortlisted for the Orange Prize in 2008, and I found out why. The writing is rich, lyrical, without being sentimental or overwhelming, and draws a vivid picture of its set [...]
The novel starts off a little hard to read. The odd comma would have been appreciated by my grammar policing brain. I soon got used to it, though, and ended up really enjoying Liebenberg's writing. She puts forward her part of Africa so clearly I felt as if I was back there. I couldn't say what the book would be like for someone who hasn't been to the south of Africa but it was all very familiar to me.The story itself was heartbreaking. I cried more than a few tears a few different times. And kn [...]
Rhodesia - a place of great beauty, but also of terrible, man-made, tragedy. The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam is, above all else, a magical evocation of childhood; at times laugh-out-loud funny, at others heartbreakingly sad. It tells the story of two young sisters, Nyree and Cia O'Callohan, who live on a remote farm in the East of what was Rhodesia in the late 1970s. Beneath the dripping vines of the Vumba rainforest, and under the tutelage of their heretical grandfather, Oupa, [...]
I found this a very difficult read. This is a South African writer and I'm also a South African. It's hard to put my finger on it, but I'll try. I personally don't think it is very well written. It's as if the author is trying too hard and the story is all over the place. I couldn't "feel" any of the characters. Maybe I had too much of an expectation - people were going on about it and it won a prize etc etc. Sorry - it just didn't do it for me or maybe I'm just a book snob. :) Oh yes - and the [...]
I really enjoyed this, it was well written. I realised reading this that I know absolutely nothing about the history of Zimbabwe. My education was so localised, we didn't even move much past the history of my province! So I learned a lot about Zimbabwe. The childhood aspects were very familiar to me. I grew up in much the same way, only in a city environment. The informal Apartheid style of living surprised me a bit, because I find that British people love to look down upon Apartheid, but things [...]
My second reading of this, for book group - I enjoyed it just as much the second time around, though the reading was slightly spoilt by knowing the end. Set during the civil war in Rhodesia, two young sisters, Nyree and Cia O'Callahan, live in a rambling old farmstead at the edge of a forest. The girls revel in their decaying paradise until the arrival of their orphaned cousin, Ronin, changes everything.
I found this a very difficult read. This is a South African writer and I'm also a South African. It's hard to put my finger on it, but I'll try. I personally don't think it is very well written. It's as if the author is trying too hard and the story is all over the place. I couldn't "feel" any of the characters. Maybe I had too much of an expectation - people were going on about it and it won a prize etc etc. Sorry - it just didn't do it for me or maybe I'm just a book snob. :)
A very light hearted title for such a heavy book!Wow quite a hectic book to read, especially being South African. The racial stance made me rather uncomfortable but it was a good reflection on what was happening at the time (and quite frankly what still happens today).I found the book beautifully written although at times perhaps a bit too detailed. I was left with a lot of unanswered questions. But overall I did enjoy it.
A wonderful and hauntingly beautiful story of two sisters growing up on an isolated farm in the East of what was Rhodesia, in the late 1970's. The girls fending for themselves most of the time create interesting ways to entertain themselves. The book is full of interesting and sometimes dark characters. The author writes in a wonderfully descriptive way and really transports us into the thoughts of these sisters. It was a book that will stay with me for a long time.
Thia is a delightful book, told from the view point of Nyree, an eight year old child. There are many voices however, as everyone Nyree encounters profoundly affects her thinking. Set on a remote farm in Rhodesia in the late 1970's, it is the story of a childhood "laced with African paganism, mangled Catholicism and the lore of Brothers Grimm". Funny, poignant, tragic and vividly told. It was one of those books that stayed with me long after reading.
Nominated for an Orange Iterature award. The story is told by an eight year old girl who lives in Rhodesia in the 1970s against a background of civil was. Even though Nyree's family live in constant fear of the 'Terrs' (terrorists) the real,threat comes from someone much more closer.A fascinating look at a childhood in another time and place - highly recommended.
Nice writing, it evoked the time (late 70s) and place (Rhodesia as was) very well. But it was slow. Several chapters in and nothing much had happened. Not enough to hold my attention anywayelfwornbooks.wordpress/
A story of sisters growing up during civil war Rhodesia/Zimbabwe. The author gives her young protagonist a refreshingly insightful voice as she makes her own observations and parrots the views of others. It is a bittersweet coming of age tale. The family is not only touched by civil war but by family tragedy and destructive forces of nature. Unfortunately more dark than delightful.
After living in Zimbabwe for 3 years this was a nostalgic record of life before i lived there.This is well written and covers the story of 2 sisters growing up in Post Rhodesia, during the 10 yr civil war , the girls live in Umtali now Mutare and they live an ideal existence until the horrors of life break in.
I read Mukiwa by Peter Godwin last year, one of the best memoirs I've ever read, and since then I've wanted to read more about the last days of Rhodesia. Hence this novel. At times it's overly self-conscious in its 'literary fiction-ness,' with the author straining a bit too hard to be lyrical. But I can't believe how quickly I read it - very atmospheric, and smartly structured.
Firstly, if you're not Rhodesian/Zimbabwean, you'll need a copy with a glossary. I enjoyed the trip down memory lane and the story started off being really sweet: two naughty youngsters on a ranch. I have to admit that I didn't see the end coming and, in some ways, it still doesn't quite sit well with me. It's a quick read bit don't expect a fairy tale ending.
A book about my past, my childhood, my memories. Incredibly evocative, each page brought something back, some good; the smells, the trees, the beauty (and the Freddo's ); some bad, the appallingly, casual racism and the terrors of the war. Am emotional read. Perfectly timed just before I go back to visit!
I loved the title of this book and, being a South African, I could relate to the story. However I was not prepared for the ending, which was beautifully written but terrible sad.A beautiful book from beginning to end.
Liked it, but wasn't blown away by it. For some reason it irked that the main character, Nyree, was supposedly only almost 9 years old and her sister Cia a couple of years younger, but both spoke like well-versed twenty somethings. Don't know why I couldn't get past that.
This had such huge potential with the main character eager to explore and learn and do amazing things but, apart from a few key incidents with her psycho cousin, it really didn't go anywhere I'm afraid.
This book was really well written but I the main storyline seemed periphal. I would have liked more about the central conflict. It was an excellent study of life in Rhodesia during the civil war but needed more plot development.
I struggled with this book. I just didn't enjoy it. I didn't hate it so much that I couldn't finish it, but it took me will-power to read it I time for the challenge. I can't tell you why, I just found it hard to gel-with if you can say that about book.
Agree with those who've commented on the title - a bit twee. Good attempt to portray the end of an era - for White Rhodesia and the children in the story, but suffered from only being one viewpoint, as it left the other characters undeveloped.
I enjoyed this book but I have mixed feelings about it. In parts it was great, descriptive and inventive. In other parts I felt the character development aside from Ronin wasn't great which affected the story.
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