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The Land of Decoration

3.6  ·  Rating details ·  3,184 Ratings  ·  565 Reviews
Blissfully inventive, brilliantly written, with a huge heart, and a tense, pulsing plot: The Land of Decoration introduces a young heroine who will change the way you see the world.

Judith and her father don't have much -- their house is full of dusty relics, reminders of the mother she's never known. But Judith sees the world with the clear Eyes of Faith, and where others
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Hardcover, 291 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by Chatto & Windus (first published 2011)
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Dora Santos Marques
A minha opinião em vídeo: https://youtu.be/xq1kXOHGyRQ

Uma excelente surpresa!
Um livro com uma criança mas uma história muito adulta e pesada.
Nicola Mansfield
Reason for Reading: Very intriguing plot captured my interest.

This is a tough book to review. I loved parts of it and disliked other parts of it. Mainly, I adored the main character, 10yo Judith, in whose voice the narrative is written. She is naive and not always a reliable narrator but we are given events from her point of view as she sees them happen. I read the book very quickly over two days and had a hard time putting the book down. Parts of it were just lovely, other parts I heartily disa
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Jane
Feb 15, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Now this is a strange one.

It begins wonderfully with a child invoking the story of creation of the world in seven days, recorded in the book of Genesis, as she creates her own model of the world.

I learned that her name was Judith. That she was ten years-old. That her mother was dead and that her father was bringing her up on his own. That he was a member of an Evangelical Christian sect that believed that the end of the world was nigh.

Judith was terribly isolated, and sadly I was not at all surp
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Rita
Esta é uma história contada por Judith McPherson, uma menina de 10 anos. Como todas, ou quase todas, as histórias narradas por crianças, o ambiente é ternurento e quase sempre nostálgico. "A Menina Que Fazia Nevar" não é excepção.
Judith é uma menina doce, apesar de todas as adversidades que tem enfrentado, tem uma relação distante e complicada com o pai (um religioso fervoroso), a mãe morreu e Judith sofre de bullying na escola. São os dias tristes e solitários de Judith que a levam a criar a "T
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Banushka
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ian Young
Apr 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Land of Decoration is a first novel told in the voice of a young girl who has been brought up as a member of a religious sect; Grace McCleen is a young writer who was herself brought up in a similar environment. Of course, most authors draw deeply on personal life experiences as they write, not surprising since writing about events and circumstances you know is likely to be easier and more realistic. However, sometimes the parallels between events and a novel and the author’s own life seem p ...more
Telma Oliveira
Feb 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Adorei a personagem principal, a forma como ela questionava tudo e a sua enorme imaginação, ,muito fiel aquilo que uma criança de 10 anos é.

Fala de temas difíceis como o bullying, religião, e sobre a relação entre um pai e uma filha e como estes tentam superar a perda da mãe desta menina . É um livro que nos faz pensar e refletir, com o qual diferentes pessoas poderão chegar a diferentes conclusões.

No entanto, achei que a alusão a religião foi um tema demasiado recorrente, tornando-se demasiado
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Mafi
Dec 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Não acho que seja um livro tocante, no sentido de emocionar e comover o leitor. A narrativa é brilhante, fala de temas difíceis e actuais mas a autora optou por construir uma narrativa que incita à reflexão e ao pensamento do leitor, pois sendo um tema tão subjectivo e pessoal, as interpretações sobre a estória da pequena menina que fez nevar podem ser as mais variadas.

Opinião completa aqui - http://algodaodoceparaocerebro.blogsp...
Mariana Pereira
A minha opinião em vídeo, deste livro fantástico:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQS-q...
Joanne Sheppard
Feb 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favourite books of last year was Among Others by Jo Walton, in which a lonely teenage misfit struggles with her own (self-perceived, at least) ability to perform potentially harmful magic. Grace McCleen's The Land of Decoration has a similar premise in some respects. Narrator Judith, who is bullied and ostracised at school and whose widowed father has brought her up as a member of a fundamentalist Christian sect which appears in all but name to be the Jehovah's Witnesses, is desperate ...more
Luanne Ollivier
Apr 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every year there seems to be a book that stays with me long after I've turned the last page. And when someone asks me for a good book recommendation, it's the first one that comes to mind. The Land of Decoration - a debut novel by Grace McCleen is one of those books.

Ten year old Judith McPherson lives in England with her father, her mother having passed away. She attends school, but is bullied and isolated, primarily because of the religious beliefs that she and her father follow.

And sometimes
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Teresa
Dec 29, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition


This is a story of many parts encompassing the frequently fraught relationship between a father and his daughter set against a backdrop of manic religious fervour and the stress of strike action with a pinch of fantasy thrown in for good measure - a heady mix indeed!

Ten year old Judith McPherson leads a rather isolated life with her widowed father. Their routine revolves around their strong religious conviction that the End Times are approaching fast but such faith won't be a match for the bulli
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Kathy
Mar 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an exceptional debut novel that I could not stop reading in spite of the deep anguish and the maternal protection that the main character invoked in me until I reached the wrenching conclusion.

The story is narrated by Judith McPherson, a ten year old that is intelligent and articulate far beyond her years. She lives with her widowed father John in a neglected home in a dying and decrepit town economically supported by the one local factory.

She and her father belong to a small, fundament
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Diane
May 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: a-favorite-read
The Land of Decoration, from the Book of Ezekiel, is a better world, the "promised land", the way 10-year old Judith McPherson wishes the world to be. It's a world Judith has created from the junk she finds, and the reader can see her creation, beginning with the opening paragraphs of this debut novel------

"IN THE BEGINNING there was an empty room, a little bit of space, a little bit of light, a little bit of time.

I said, I'm going to make fields, and I made them from place mats, carpet, brown
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Patty
Apr 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Land Of Decoration
By
Grace McCleen

My Quick Thoughts...

Judith lives with her father...in her room she has this sort of replica world.  She uses junk to create this decorated place.  She calls it her Land Of Decoration.

My Thoughts After Reading This Book...

Oh my goodness!  What a precious character 10 year old Judith is.  She is sweet and funny and thoughtful and heartbreakingly achingly sad.  She lives with her father and they follow a weird religion which causes them to not celebrate holidays
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Nancy
Mar 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ten-year-old Judith McPherson (her given name hints at her fierce mythic power) has a secret: God speaks to her. Loudly. The rigid yet salvific God of the sect that rules the McPherson family's lives turns out to be considerably more unpredictable when chatting with young Judith, and Judith is learning that using "divine" power has consequences that no ten-year-old could predict.

Grace McCleen's debut novel is fascinating, disturbing, funny, troubling. Does God really talk to Judith, or have the
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Mehmet
Sep 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the beginning I assumed that I was venturing into the life of a very young prophetess, which was quite engrossing nonetheless. Although I can't be certain whether the voice that spoke to her in her head either belonged to the author's idea of God or the Devil himself, or, and quite possibly, it was merely the main character's overactive imagination, given that the conversations were pretty lifelike and lacked all sorts of divinity. Still, with all of this dubiousness, I must admit that I like ...more
Rita
Sep 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Adorei. Foi um livro que me fez pensar bastante , é uma história muito pessoal, se procuram magia, uma leitura simples e sentida este livro é o ideal.
Falando sobre assuntos muito interessantes e por vezes dolorosos/complicados : Religião e Bullying, este transporta-nos até um mundo mágico feito de coisas que são lixo para a maior parte das pessoas onde Judith conseguia encontrar força e um refúgio onde podia esconder-se do mundo.
Heather Noble
May 05, 2012 rated it did not like it
This book didn't work at all for me. It had no sense of time or place - could have been the seventies, could have been Wales or somewhere North with hills. The joyless religious sect stifling the lives of Judith and her father reminded me of the more than just a Baptist religions I came into contact with as a child but to me the plot, the setting and the characters were just contrived stereotypes in a story that failed to convince.
Ilenia Zodiaco
Apr 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: europea


"Il posto dei miracoli" è la storia semplice di una bambina straordinaria. So cosa state pensando. Non ne possiamo più di superbambini inoppurtuni e saputelli che si comportano come trentenni misantropi, vantando una superiorità morale e spirituale (qualcuno ha detto "L'eleganza del riccio"?). I bambini nella fiction sono sempre un rischio. Ed è per questo che, per me, bisogna riconoscere alla McCleen un doppio merito: quello di aver scritto una storia bellissima e quello di aver creato una prot
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Dion Ribeiro
Confesso que não sabia o que esperar deste livro, e mesmo agora, depois de lido, tenho alguma dificuldade em dar a minha opinião. No entanto, achei esta leitura algo deprimente...
Judith, uma menina com apenas 10 anos, tem já um fardo que nenhuma criança merece suportar: sente-se culpada pela morte da mãe; pensa que o pai não a ama porque ela foi responsável pela perda da mulher que ele tanto adorava; não tem amigos e ainda sofre de bullying na escola; ajuda nas tarefas domésticas, inclusivé a c
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Kirsty
Aug 02, 2016 rated it liked it
The Land of Decoration is told from the first person perspective of ten-year-old Judith McPherson. Her narration is childish at times, infused with buckets of naïvety and a wry humour which it seems she has adopted in order to make the situations which unfold around her lose much of their terrifying seriousness. She asks questions of the kind which inquisitive children of her age revel in – what dying is like and how long someone can breathe underwater, for example. Her observations on life work ...more
Jason
Dec 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really wanted to LOVE this book. It has all the markings and reviews that lead me to believe this would be another ROOM; one of my favorite books, at least in the last five years. Ultimately, I just liked this book. It swayed back and forth between a three and a two, and given the ending (no spoiler here) it fell flat on two, almost crushing it with its weight.

Issues with writing and execution: the two main characters both lacked depth. Issues with general construction, and sequencing abound,
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Alex Templeton
Oct 02, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn’t anticipate that this novel, about a 10-year-old girl who believes that she has been given the power to perform miracles, would be so suspenseful, but I zoomed right through it. Judith McPherson belongs to what can probably best be described as an end-of-days cult of Christianity; those beliefs have made her a bullied pariah amongst her classmates. She spends her free time using bits and pieces others have cast off to make a model world in her room, that she calls the Land of Decoration ...more
Karen Mace
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: hardback
Another case of me being drawn to a lovely cover on a hardback book which led me to buy this one as I'd heard very little about it beforehand!

This book is from the viewpoint of 10 year old Judith and you will instantly fall in love with her as she's been through so much in her life and now lives with her widowed father who is very religious and to escape her life she constructs the Land of Decoration in her bedroom that she makes out of anything she finds and this is the world she escapes to and
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Krennu
Oct 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Luin Grace McCleenin kirjan Ihana maa. Se kertoo nuoresta tytöstä Judithista, joka uskoo Jumalaan. Judithia kiusataan, joten hän rakentaa huoneeseensa pienoismaailman paetakseen todellisuutta. Yhtenä päivänä Judith huomaa, että hän voi tehdä ihmeitä, joten hän toivoo pahoja asioita kiusaajalleen. Seuraukset ovat kamalat, joten Judithia aletaan kiusata pahemmin.

Tein mielipidetekstin kiusaamisesta. Mielestäni kaikenlainen kiusaaminen, väheksyminen tai syrjiminen on todella paha asia, sillä kiusatt
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Janet
Feb 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
When I first started to read this book I thought it wasn't for me, but because of reading good reviews I persevered and I'm glad I did. My initial uncertainty didn't last long and before I knew it this book had me engrossed, and I couldn't put it down.

The book tells the story of ten year old Judith who lives with her father, her mother died in childbirth. Judith and her father belong to an unnamed religious group, that one suspects are Jehovah's witnesses. Judith creates a model of her world in
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Stef
Aug 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This stunning, beautifully told novel explores intention, faith and creativity. When a lonely, motherless young girl with an emotionally closed-off father experiences an excess of cruelty at school, she turns to The Land of Decoration, a world she's constructed in her bedroom out of found objects. When she notices correlations between the land she's created and reality, she realizes she has the power to create what she calls "miracles" and believes she is God's Instrument. As could be expected, ...more
Sarah
Jun 22, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sarah by: Miriam
Well, that was...thought provoking! Though the story was often painful to read, it was equally engrossing and strangely resonant. I say "strangely" because I didn't have any idea what was going on and I still don't!
Jim
Aug 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ten-year-old Judith and her dad John belong to an unpopular religion that’s never named but bears a striking resemblance to Jehovah’s Witnesses.

People regard the Witnesses as a cult. It’s an emotive word. It suggests an organisation that strips away the free will of their members. I would counter that all religions require their congregants to—of their own free will (important point here)—subjugate their own will in favour of what their particular god says they should do. (Just think of evangeli
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Grace McCleen was born in Wales and grew up in a fundamentalist religion where she did not have much contact with non-believers. Her family moved to Ireland when she was ten, where she was schooled at home. When Grace and her family moved back to Britain she went back to school and her English teacher suggested she apply to Oxford.

She studied English Literature at Oxford University and The Univer
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“Miracles don't have to be big, and they can happen in the unlikeliest places. Sometimes they are so small people don't notice. Sometimes miracles are shy. They brush against your sleeve, they settle on your eyelashes. They wait for you to notice, then melt away. Lots of things start by being small. It's a good way to begin, because no one takes any notice of you. You're just a little thing beetling along, minding your own business. Then you grow.” 19 likes
“Once there was a man and a woman. When they met sparks flew, meteors collided, asteroids turned cartwheels and atoms split. He loved her from here to eternity, she loved him to the moon and back. They were two peas in a pod, heads and tails and noughts and crosses.” 7 likes
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