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Bookclub: The Elegance of the Hedgehog

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By Anne van Oorschot

eleganceFor our last book discussion gathering of the club year, we met at Anne’s to discuss the French best seller (well translated into English of course!) The Elegance of the Hedgehog, by Muriel Barbery.  The weather Gods even smiled on our group of 7 so we were able to sit outside  and enjoy the garden and the mild evening.  While not everyone finished the book, all who did said they had a bit of a hard time getting “into” the book. One comment made was that the author, who has studied philosophy, was trying too hard to be deep and meaningful in the beginning, succeeding more in being a bit pompous and confusing. Fortunately, that tendency disappeared and the story that was left was interesting and captivating.  


A 12 year old girl and a middle aged woman. Two very different characters – from different generations and social classes – discovered each other as kindred spirits. They both found someone who truly saw beyond the stereotypes surrounding them to the real person within. While a tragic occurrence cut their contact short, knowing that there had been someone who truly saw THEM, made a lasting impact.  An interesting read!

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