Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ella Minnow Pea - Book Review

My friend Jen recommended that I read Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn. Because I have loved everything Jen has suggested, I immediately ordered the book. I read the delightful novel yesterday while I cuddled a sick little girl again.

The story of Ella Minnow Pea (say it out loud) takes place on the fictional island of Nollop which has been named after the man who coined the typesetter's favorite phrase: "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog." which includes every letter of the alphabet at least once with minimal repeats. On the island of Nollop the people learn and value language as they honor the author.

Letters begin falling from the town memorial and the Town Council bans their use. Would it be a big deal if you could no longer use the letter "Z"? (Could you live without pizza?) As the letters are banned from the town, the author ceases to use them in the book. Meanwhile, Ella is determined to save her homeland from certain linguistic and physical ruin.

This book is a clever use of letters, words and language. I LOVE the vocabulary--real and created. While the book is a love letter to language it ultimately becomes an interesting parable about totalitarian governments and senseless laws as well as the dangers of worshipping any one over God. It is a charming, quick read.


Jen said...

I am glad you liked it! I thought it was a very fun, light, yet thought provoking read. I have another I am sending you and Utah Dad for Christmas. :)

BTW, I just finished "Guernsey...Society" and thought it was charming. Aawww, what a sweetie Dawsey is! A good pick that will be a universal pleaser as a gift. I am excited for one of your lucky readers to win it.

Booklogged said...

I loved this book! Very clever with a good underlying message.