Thursday, April 21, 2016

Ella Minnow Pea / Mark Dunn / 208 pgs

This little book was a quick read, but very cute. It is a satire all about censorship and totalitarianism. The residents of the little island of Nollop off the coast of South Carolina find themselves having to speak and write without the use of certain letters when the town's monument to the sentence "The Quick Brown Fox Jumped Over the Lazy Dog" starts to disintegrate, and the governing High Council decides that it is a supreme being who wishes  the island's population to stretch their vocabulary by no longer using those particular letters of the alphabet.

The entire book is epistolary with letters written between the titular character and her cousin, her mother, her father, her cousin's mother, and a few other characters. At first, the epistles' vocabulary grow as the characters are forced to find more quaint and archaic words to get around the growing number of illegal letters of the alphabet, but as more and more letters drop from the monument, the epistles go in the opposite direction. They start to sound as if a small child had written them.

***FAIR WARNING*** You will find yourself having to sound out the gibberish in the letters towards the end of the book just to make sense of what is written.

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