Sunflower's Reviews > The Elegance of the Hedgehog

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
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's review
May 14, 2010

liked it
bookshelves: fiction-read-2010, europe
Read from May 12 to 13, 2010

** spoiler alert ** "The hedgehog: a deceptively indolent little creature, fiercely solitary-and terribly elegant". I'm not sure I find it so, but there is the derivation of the intriguing title.
If you don't like philosophical meanderings you won't like this book. Without them it would be incredibly short. The story is told alternately by the two protagonists, one aged twelve and the other middle-aged. As I see it they both feel they are stuck in lives not of their choosing but don't initially believe they have any choice, so one plans to commit suicide, and the other keeps silent and pretends to be what people expect.
The recurrent theme of people seeing only what they expect to see changes towards the end, and as one begins to achieve her escape it is taken cruelly from her, which helps to free the other.
At times the language feels a little stilted (perhaps because of translation) and at times it flows.
Worth a read. Really 3.5 stars.

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08/29/2016 marked as: read

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