Paul's Corner: The Life of Elves by Muriel Barbery

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Muriel Barbery

Muriel Barbery is a wonderful French novelist, whose earlier book, The Elegance of the Hedgehog, was an international bestseller. Life of Elves is something different altogether. It is a perfectly straight-faced exploration of Faerie and Elven life and culture, a book like you’d think Ursula K. Leguin might be able to pull off. Faerie cultures exist in nearly every world culture, parallel people living lives parallel to our own on earth. Not just like humans but peculiarly different. Readers should understand that nothing in The Life of Elves resembles children’s literature and that much of it is dark-hued in tone. It is a magnificent work of the imagination and thrilling book not to be missed.