The Tiny One: A Novel
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The Tiny One: A Novel

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  210 ratings  ·  34 reviews
With clarity, sensitivity, and striking authenticity, Eliza Minot adeptly captures the voice of a vibrant, intelligent child swept into a sea of sorrow and confusion in The Tiny One.

Via Mahoney Revere is eight years old when her mother is killed in a car accident. Confused by anguish, bewildered by her mother's absence, and mystified by the notion of death itself, Via rete...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published October 17th 2000 by Vintage (first published 1999)
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Carolina Zapotitla
The book The Tiny One by Eliza Minot is a book that takes you along with the author. The story is told by the little girl, Via. She tells you about every memory she has ever had with her mother who has just recently died. She tells her memories with great detail. She makes it seem like as though you were actually there. The way she tells the story of how she goes through every thought and memory she ever had is very descriptive and it shows what going on inside the mind of an eight year old girl...more
Julie Ivens
May 12, 2014 Julie Ivens rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Give it a try!
Recommended to Julie by: Original Voices at Borders
Shelves: books-i-love
This is by far my all time favorite book. I think I have read it a hundered times since I bought it as a hardcover in 1999 (and you can tell by taking a look at it that it is well loved, well worn). It is so full of pure feeling and pure memory. It is comforting and hopeful and vibrant. Can't really put it into words, and I know it's not for everybody, but I love it immensely. :)

Two of my favorite parts:

"One night Marly and her friend June go skinny-dipping in the rain in the Emersons' pool and...more
Komal
This book begins promisingly, but it soon becomes utterly tiresome. It repeats over and over the formula of one passage from the present and one from the past until it becomes almost idiotic. Eventually one loses every shred of sympathy for the little girl because she is, to be frank, not making much sense.

The book reads like someone thought every single thing they think is deep if they sequin it with metaphors and similes.

There is also far too much mention of American products from various bran...more
Christine Crawford
My sister gave me this book b/c she knows the author. It is not the type of book I usually pick up (not that I know what that type is), but I did think it was very sweet. It is told from the perspective of an 8-yr-old girl whose mother has been killed in a car accident. It is stream of consciousness and the author does a really wonderful job of channeling a child's thoughts. It's impossible to read this and not be reminded of your childhood self. It is totally authentic to the point that I felt...more
Robin
The stream of consciensness style that this is written in took a little getting used to. At times it seemed to jerk you from one subject to another. But that is the mind of a seven year old. She's finding comfort in remembering the day her mother died- every single detail of it. She even relives the flashbacks she had that day. So there are memories encased within other memories. Sometimes I felt like 'Get to the point already,' but most of the time, it was fun to just flaot along with the memor...more
Jericha
I have complicated feelings about this book.

The first two and last three pages of the book I found to be incredibly clumsily written. The rest of the book was an absolutely joy to read. Eliza Minot's similes are a dream; I was reading this simultaneously with The Marriage Plot, which has some of the worst similes I've ever encountered, and the contrast was kind of delightfully shocking. The book itself is a little, I don't know, fluffy. A young girl whose mother has just died is recalling the da...more
Carolyn
At times, the voice of the young narrator sounded so realistic it drew me right back to my own childhood and the kinds of thoughts and observations an eight year old would have. Yet there were many instances when Via, the narrator, sounded much older than an eight year old should. She mentioned being advanced in school, but that didn't seem enough to explain how she would be so precocious. I was distracted by that discrepancy and by the constant avalanche of memories from Via's life -- less coul...more
Stephanie
The story line of this book is great, but it was not written well. I had a hard time connecting with the 8 year old narrator. Her character outline never seemed to match up. She was very sporadic and confusing. I was not fond of the character development at all.
The plot became repetitive and lack luster. The only reason I continued reading was because I was waiting for the "awe-haw" moment where topics came together and emotion was felt. Sadly, that never happened. The last chapter of a good bo...more
Lee
Tells essentially the same story as Monkeys (written by the sister of Monkey's author) but from the perspective of the youngest child in the family. I had trouble with the first person narrative supposedly told in "real time" - - although the story was well written and interesting, it was not a successful representation of a third grader and I found that detracted for me by breaking the willing suspension. It was a masterful as a remembrance and reflection on childhood. The ending was written as...more
Sarah
The author does an absolutely phenomenal job nailing the thoughts and observations of children--I felt like she had mined my 8 year old brain at several points. For instance: "The cinder-block walls are painted yellow and when I run my finger along the track between each block it's smooth and fits perfectly like I've made the line with my finger on frosting." So I wasn't the only one thought that exact same thing, huh?

The book is incredibly poignant, but considering the subject matter, it's not...more
Jean
I LOVE the writing style of this book. It's something like stream of consciousness, and is very mcuh like the direction our thoughts take as we daydream, or even night-dream. As the main character in the book experiences the day of her mother's funeral, she remembers the day her mother died, and those memories recall other memories. Memories within memories within memories. So fascinating!
Maria Barci
Kind of boring. The story is okay, but it just had way too much unnecessary detail. The only thing I will say I really enjoyed was it had me reminiscing about a lot of things taking me back to my child hood as a little girl growing up when I did. A sad story and all in all relatable, but kind of a wase of time too.
Dianachristine
The writing style was beautiful and it started out so promising. About halfway through the book though the plot-or lack thereof- really started to drag. The ending was so anti-climactic. I'm torn because of the beautiful writing, but the story just seemed to go nowhere.
Michelle Pantoja-hooley
This book for me held all the longing for answers to an impossible question: why did my mother die? I lost my mother 25 years ago and this book was as close to an actual portrayal of how we look at every second of a horrible event to find meaning.
Wendy Wax
I wanted to like this memoir--especially since the author grew up at the same time I did. But her descriptions were a little too exaggerated. The author seemed more connected to how cute she must have been than to who she was on the inside.
Karlie
Feb 09, 2009 Karlie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Women
This book was very unique. It's written like an 8 year-old girl...kind of annoying and kind of cute at the same time. I liked it but I like weird stuff. It made me pretty nostalgic.
Becky
This was a really touching book--it is told through the eyes of a fourth-grader who loses her mom in a car accident. It sounds really depressing, but it actually isn't.
Linda
Good read, but hard - seeing that my own Mother was killed in a car accident. Sometimes books like this cleanse me; I feel a kinship with the characters.
Shana
Eliza Minot just swept me away with this book -I was utterly in Via's world, and on rereads, have been able to recapture that "first read" magic.
Sarah
I love love love this book and the Minot sisters and sparse prose in general. A lovely poem of a book. Sad, but in the best way possible.
Charise
Beautifully written! It will take you back to the smallest, most forgotten moments of your childhood.
Lindsay
a 9 yr old tries to understand the concept of death...i found this very painful at times, very touching.
Beth
Sep 02, 2007 Beth rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: 1970s
This and Black Swan Green are the best examples I've ever encountered of getting into the head of a child.
Jessica Hill
This is by far one of my very favorite books...I laughed and cried and have read it more than once!
Christy
I just could not get into this book, Via's 8 year old voice in this novel seemed rather forced.
Delene Rau
Jan 05, 2011 Delene Rau rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Delene by: Sara Textoris
Well written. The author does a great job of writing from the perspective of a child.
Susan
Nov 05, 2007 Susan is currently reading it
I'm finding this tough to finish, too precious and somehow too painful
Ann
What an amazing book. I don't know how I missed this book in 1999!
Noriko Nakada
Interesting use of the child's voice but wanted more in the end...
Kristen
almost unbearably beautiful and sad
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