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Milk Teeth

Milk Teeth

RRP: £16.99
Price: £8.495
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this is another brilliant book to add to the 20 year old girl struggling through life, chasing highs, grappling with love and identity and figuring out who they are list. Despite these moments in which the narration is given the control that the narrator so desires, this novel is full. I thought I had chosen London as the place where I would make my own life, but its edges were sharp and cruel and I got caught on them, bloodying my ankles and wrists. She also navigates the fear of living with regrets, making bad choices and not living up to your potential. I personally find this kind of writing style incredibly clumsy, ugly and embarrassing, but I am sure this will appeal to many people.

Of all the senses, it is taste that is evoked the most, descriptions of food a sustained motif throughout as the protagonist battles with her own discomfort with eating, the learned feeling that to restrain oneself is commendable, and grows to embrace a different relationship with appetite, through food cooked for, and by, her new partner, and through the offerings of Barcelona – small plates of tapas, tinned peaches on the beach, breakfast pastries, barbequed calçots at a barrio street party. It is that - the impossibly gorgeous language that is hard to define - and the way this book grapples with so many heavy themes, all of them ghosts that trail through her life, still able to graze their phantom hands against the reins of her life. I still haven’t got around to reading Jessica Andrews’ debut, Saltwater, leapfrogging over the copy on my TBR to read her new novel.She couldn’t tell me a huge amount about it then, saying only that it was about ‘hunger and denial, or desire and denial’, and that it was still in a state of flux, and so to say more would risk fixing that which was not yet fixed. My body is a desperate animal, throbbing with constant need but perhaps I could learn to be unashamed of needing and wanting, to see it as living instead. I refuse to perpetuate the stereotype that all female written fiction is autobiographical – of course it isn’t.

The writing was excellent, so descriptive and lyrical - it flowed beautifully and made me want to read everything Andrews has ever written - I can’t believe I haven’t read Saltwater yet. And her - much like she does her friends and the man she is enraptured by - pushing us a safe distance away. You can hear the sounds of the various city environments; you can feel the somehow simultaneous discomfort and ecstasy of being embodied; most of all, the descriptions of food are so palpable as to be some of the standout linguistic passages. The food descriptions sound tempting, so also a book which makes one hungry as well (that part’s always welcome).In the sticky Mediterranean heat, among tropical plants and secluded beaches, she must decide what form her adult life should take and learn how to feel deserving of love and care. Glad to be alive, and hungry for more – more travel to European cities, more delicious food, more books to be read, more of this terrible-wonderful-unpredictable life.

There’s a delicate balance throughout the novel between the tight, restrictive control of the protagonist and the indulgence she’s attempting to embrace.Years later, living in tiny rented rooms and working in noisy bars across London and Paris, she meets someone who offers her a new way to experience the world. It transports you fully to the various locations it is set in, covering the five senses with detailed descriptions until you are immersed in the grimy pubs and packed nightclubs of London, the pokey attic bedrooms of Paris, and, most vividly I feel, the hot streets and tiny tapas bars of Barcelona. They see each other often: he loves to cook; she fights her constant struggle to eat freely and with appetite.

  • Fruugo ID: 258392218-563234582
  • EAN: 764486781913
  • Sold by: Fruugo

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