Editorial Reviews. Review. “Here is a keenly observed tale of a family in crisis, one that mixes Some Kind of Fairy Tale - site edition by Graham Joyce. Some Kind of Fairy Tale is a very English story. A story of woods and clearings, a story of folk tales and family histories. It is as if Neil Gaiman and Joanne Harris. Read "Some Kind of Fairy Tale A Novel" by Graham Joyce available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first download. Acclaimed author .
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Some Kind of Fairy Tale by Graham Joyce. Read an download the Ebook: . “ Reading Some Kind of Fairy Tale is a little like stepping into an enormous, brilliantly. Some Kind of Fairy Tale book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. It is Christmas afternoon and Peter Martin gets an unexp. When I heard about Some Kind of Fairy Tale I knew I had to read it. Review . Ebook available for site US, site UK, google, nook and sony.
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John Mandel. The Paying Guests. Sarah Waters. The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches. Alan Bradley. The Fireman. She says that to her, she had only been away six months. Everybody is understandably shocked by this turn of events. Her parents expect she will soon tell them the actual truth. Peter thinks she truly believes that what she is saying is the truth and arranges for her to see a psychiatrist who, in turn, believes she is sick.
Her former boyfriend Richie the one everybody suspected had killed her and who still loves her slowly starts to believe her story.
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Some Kind of Fairy Tale is for its first three quarters, a beautifully written tale of humanity. The latter is perhaps my favourite thing about the book: their friendship was broken when Peter suspected his best friend and mended when Tara came back, both threads extremely emotional and wonderfully developed. It does have to be said: I thought that the least developed character was Tara herself even though part of the story is narrated from her point of view and despite the fact that she is such a central character.
Perhaps part of it stems from how diaphanous and ethereal she was described to be. In truth, at times, I felt she was the epitome of how we commonly think of fairies and perhaps the whole point of her character. Still, I wished to understand and to know her better but appreciate that perhaps that was in fact, the point.
Storylines and character aside, I would like to address the narrative, which I thought was genius. The story is actually narrated by an omniscient unseen narrator who prefaces his tale by telling us straight away: Of course, everything depends on who is telling the story.
But even Graham Joyce himself disagrees with this, saying that his writing is more akin to the English "weird tale" tradition, which includes such writer as Arthur Machen or Algernon Blackwood.
He terms his style of writing as "Old Peculiar". The truth is that he writes speculative fiction, which overlaps our current convenient "genres", as arguably the best fiction does, and in its best parts conjures up similar feelings to these authors he admires. If his work has to have a label attached, then it is metafiction. He is a prolific writer, and has won many awards, including the O. Henry Award, for both his novels and short stories.
Graham Joyce grew up in a small mining village just outside of Coventry to a working-class family. His origins therefore are similar to those of D. Of this award, he says, "I was truly stunned to get a standing ovation when I went to collect the award. It was as surprising as it was uplifting and it left me - a burly miner's son with an outstanding chip on his shoulder - with a heart fit to burst Six months ago my skin was turning blue and I was flat-lining in a hospital bed in Leicester after having a terrible reaction to my first dose of chemotherapy.
Perhaps they go some way to explain the imbalance between the parts. There is rather too much clinical analysis when the reader is expected to sustain suspension of belief.
Our trained scepticism rears its ugly head. The family saga and lads-night-out scenario also becomes a little tiresome. The deconstruction is fascinating and unusual, but it might have been an even better novel if the fantasy element had been further described, as the writing is quite lyrical and beautiful in places, and to be brought down to earth quite so often isn't always welcome.
In the final analysis, although everything can be explained to the satisfaction of our current knowledge and reason, Graham Joyce deliberately entices us to believe in his "constructed dream, made of smoke and mirrors".
The character Tara herself objects to modern classifications, "Histrionic personality disorder.
They don't like being called fairies in the same way that I don't like being called histrionic. View all 7 comments. Mar 09, Candi rated it liked it Shelves: Is there really a veil to the world that is drawn back, or do we have to use our own power and suspend our own disbelief in order to see beyond what is visibly evident?
I felt I had to make these choices while reading this book and it seemed a curious exercise. My first Jo 3 stars "There is a veil to this world, thin as smoke, and it draws back occasionally and when it does we can see incredible things. My first Joyce novel, The Tooth Fairy , had a similar though more unsettling and darker tone throughout. After disappearing following a walk in The Outwoods twenty years ago, Tara suddenly reappears and has much to answer to her parents, brother and former boyfriend.
She has a tale to tell that is quite fantastical — or is it? Could she be telling the truth or is she suffering from some sort of trauma that has caused her to compensate by telling such an outlandish story? Her story is believable in its own fashion. Tara's brother convinces her to speak with a psychiatrist, Dr. Underwood, upon her return. I quite enjoyed this part of the novel and found Dr. Underwood's clinical explanations fascinating and plausible as well.
Just now as I am writing this, I have to wonder if it is not a coincidence that the author chose to name the psychiatrist Dr. His reasoning is told in juxtaposition to Tara's story of her experiences after disappearing in "The Outwoods".
Anyway, this just struck me now and I can't say if there is significance or not. Just as I can't quite draw a conclusion about what really happened on that day that Tara went missing. I like Joyce's style of writing — good pacing, satisfying and interesting dialogue, well-drawn characters, and some vivid descriptions.
The woods and the bluebells were perfectly enchanting: It turned you over and shook the juice right out of you. You couldn't walk between them that year, they were so dense; you had to swim in them.
The madness of it! The scent was so subtle that it got all over you, in your nostrils, in your cavities, and on your fingers like the smell of a sweet sin. Didn't it bind you in blue lace and carry you away? I can't quite pinpoint exactly what happened; maybe I just wanted more answers. But, I don't think that was the author's intention here.
I may not be the kind of reader intended for this type of book. I struggle a bit with magical realism. When presented with a great fantasy novel, I can quickly adapt and grasp onto what I need to believe in order to fully engage with the story. Maybe I needed to visit the fantasy world here a little more often. I felt tied to the real world a bit too much — and when I felt tied in this way, I couldn't quite emerge from it.
This in turn left me even more perplexed with the ending.
View all 12 comments. Feb 08, Joanne Harris added it. This book was a bit of an emotional ride. I knew Graham and liked him, and his death at such a young age came as quite a shock to me. I can hear the author's voice very clearly; quiet and a little ironic, so close it's almost heartbreaking. Read it - it's special in all kin This book was a bit of an emotional ride. Read it - it's special in all kinds of ways - but try to remember it in May, when the bluebells are flowering.
View 1 comment. Apr 09, Morgannah rated it really liked it. Even after finishing Some Kind of Fairy Tale I have managed to hold on to the feeling behind the book which is a true testament to the power of Mr. Joyce's ability to create mood and character. This was my first Joyce book and it came highly recommended by a dear friend and trusted reader and I am so glad that I picked it up and got to experience the exquisite prose and vivid characters. I could tell right away that Joyce was a beautiful writer and a storyteller who prided himself on writing from Even after finishing Some Kind of Fairy Tale I have managed to hold on to the feeling behind the book which is a true testament to the power of Mr.
I could tell right away that Joyce was a beautiful writer and a storyteller who prided himself on writing from the heart. For me, this book was about love, loss and how magical our lives are, even in the most ordinary of moments. And yes, there are other worlds behind the veil but for Joyce the real magic is in our loves and hopes in the here and now and what we do with them.
View 2 comments. The premise sounded rather interesting and I thought it was worth a shot. That said, there was little trepidation as I realized the book contained magical realism. Having no previous experience with Graham Joyce, I was pleasantly surprised to see that he had a deft had and could weave the elements of magical realism with great precision.
One of the top 3 books I have read this year.
Plot Summary The story opens on Christmas morning to the Martin family. Peter Martin are enjoying a hectic holiday feast while down the road his mother and father are also enjoying the same. Soon after drinking an excellent wine and eating the Christmas goose, Mr. Martin Sr. Standing in front of him is his daughter, Tara, who had gone missing and was presumed dead 20 years earlier.
With her arrival follows, joy, confusion and anger all of which are compounded by her story and her appearance. Tara looks as if she hasn't aged since her disappearance and by her own account, she believes she has only been gone for 6 months. What follows is a story that leaves the reader questioning the possible and the impossible and whether a fairy tale is truly better than real life. My Take I am not an expert in literature.
I was an English Major for a year and a half and quickly realized that I did see eye to eye with the faculty and their approach. After receiving a graded paper that told me I was very close to misinterpreting a novel, I decided I needed to move on.
The great thing about literature is that there is no single interpretation.
Great novels can speak to many people and tell many different stories. I am interested in finding my own truth in a great work. This is one of those novels that lends itself to many interpretation within its delicate layers. While I can't provide the literary definition of magical realism, I see it as the authors attempt to take the magical, the unreal, the unexplainable and weave into the world of the normal, the average or the mundane. To me, great magical realism leaves you searching for the "truth" even is an ultimate truth is not available.
I could take a more academic approach to this work and break it down and try an explain the various elements. If that is something you enjoy, this novel certainly provides the opportunity. I am more interested in the author's ability to develop and combine the various layers. On one level, there is a background "fairy tale" in the story told by Tara. There the reasoned and realistic story told through the notes and opinions of Tara's psychologist and when the elements are combined as a whole, we are given a modern day fairy story.
This novel was well suited to the audio version and I highly recommend it. It brought me back to may childhood, sitting and listening to my grandfather tell me fairy tales. In my mind, fairy tales are best told aloud.
The author is a very skilled writer. The words and phrases are all expertly crafted and infused with meaning. This story can be enjoyed on many levels.
If you are not interested in pulling apart and interpreting layers, the basic plot is very enjoyable and well worth your time. Final Thoughts I could break down each of the elements I enjoyed but it is suffice to say that is truly a complete novel. The reading listening experience was truly magical and left me pondering the my own conception of a fairy tale.
The characters are engaging, the story is moving and the writing is superb. This novel resulted in a book hangover for me and as a result, I am unable to fully express my feelings on this one. I highly recommend it and hope you give it a try. Aug 11, Cayleigh rated it liked it Shelves: A few minutes after I finished the book I gave it a 4 star rating on Goodreads, after sitting for a while and thinking it over I had to switch it down to a 3 star rating.
First let me say this: I read the book in less than 12 hours. I really liked Hiero, and I would have loved to know more about his motives for bringing Tara with him and protecting her as he did but this is ultimately what made me rate the book lower.
Also, I resent that the land they go to has to be full of sex crazed citizens. That left me unfulfilled with this story. Although I did enjoy reading it and would probably recommend it. One more tiny thing, I really liked the quotes at the beginning of the chapters, though the ones concerning Michael Cleary were almost scary, what a sad event that happened to his wife. When Hiero was seen to be eying up Zoe to possibly bring her back to his land? It said it was only 4 months after Tara had disappeared for the second time.
I got the impression he was enchanted with her, telling her his secret name and such I just really don't get why we see him trying to pull Zoe into it as well at the end. Although I could see it coming a little, Zoe's picking up so well to Richie's instruction on the guitar, Hiero's folk being so into classical arts and such I suppose that was sort of setting that up in a small way. It just irritated me though.
View all 3 comments. I've never heard of Graham Joyce before, but I plan to read more of his work. I loved this book. Not perfect, some flaws near the end but that is subjectively based on my own feminine needs , but so inventive and original.
It was very hard to put this down. Fans of Tana French's In the Woods will enjoy this too. Very British, heavy on place set near some mysterious ancient woodlands over a volcanic fault , with a bit of a mystery thrown in. It also starts on Christmas day, so perfect time of th I've never heard of Graham Joyce before, but I plan to read more of his work.
It also starts on Christmas day, so perfect time of the year to read it. The plot: Tara returns, after disappearing for 20 years. Only she hasn't aged. She is still 16, and thinks she has been gone for 6 months. Joyce deftly arranges a mosaic of different povs that revolve around Tara and the truth of her story--was she abducted by fairies, as she claims?
Only these aren't your average Tinker Bell fairies. They are more like commune hippies that copulate constantly and have orgies and swim in an orgasmic lake. You have to read it. The book has gotten some criticism because of this take on fairyland and the crude language that takes you by surprise.
It is, after all, written by a man. My feeling is that this supernatural world is the imagination of a male unconscious, not the feminine ethereal world we're used to seeing as fairyland in women's popular fiction. This is gritty, humorous, and the characters are dead on. I usually hate reading from multiple povs but this is one of the few books where I enjoyed them. There's a reason Stephen King put this in his top Read it and enjoy the fantasy Joyce sets up.
And wonder if it could be true View all 9 comments. Nov 29, Tom Mathews rated it it was amazing Shelves: Graham Joyce has just become an author that I will be following. This story of a Tara Harris, teenage girl who disappeared in the woods only to return home virtually unchanged twenty years later has totally captured my heart. Is this a story of something mundane such as kidnapping or is it something entirely differe Graham Joyce has just become an author that I will be following.
Is this a story of something mundane such as kidnapping or is it something entirely different? Perhaps Hansel and Gretel was first told to warn children not to wander off in the woods or to accept candy from strangers, but there are other, deeper interpretations of the stories your parents told you as a child.
Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed. Similarly, I doubt that it is coincidental that her brother Peter, has become a farrier, a shoer of horses, a trade long considered natural magicians for their ability to meld the living and the inanimate.
Even the names of the pubs they frequent, the Green Man and the Phantom Coach, reek of dark and powerful folklore. I loved this book because, from the first page to the last, it is imbued with a sense of the uncanny, am impression that there is something out there beyond our ken that makes the world just a little bit magical. Oct 03, J. I'm so glad I discovered Graham Joyce several years ago, as he has become one of my favorite authors. Of course, her family is shocked and the girl is reluctant to tell anyone the truth about why she has been away for so long.
After confiding in her brother, he sets up an appointment for Tar I'm so glad I discovered Graham Joyce several years ago, as he has become one of my favorite authors. After confiding in her brother, he sets up an appointment for Tara with a psychiatrist. The story weaves wonderful juxtapositions between family members, the psychiatrist, Tara's boyfriend, a mysterious old neighbor lady, and Tara herself. This novel was a brilliant look into the lives we lead, and how people's perceptions are altered based on "truth", wonder, magic, ego, and relationships.
Joyce delivers a marvelous book that will remain in my thoughts for many years to come. Highly recommended. View all 4 comments. First I just love the way he writes, intelligently but infinitely readable. A young woman goes missing, her boyfriend at the time is presumed guilty but it cannot be proven, she reappears twenty years later with an unbelievable story.
Her parents and brother send her to a psychiatrist to see if she is mentally ill. Enjoyed the character of the crusty old psychiatrist, but my favorite character was Richie. The author does a fantastic job with this character, showing how his growth was stunted bec First I just love the way he writes, intelligently but infinitely readable.Ned Beauman. Imagine his surprise, when she shows up at their parent's home on Christmas Day. Some books with similar themes: Super glad I did. Final Thoughts I could break down each of the elements I enjoyed but it is suffice to say that is truly a complete novel.
Tara seems happy enough but there is something about her. Sabaa Tahir. Naomi Novik.
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