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The Land of Decoration [Englisch] [Gebundene Ausgabe]

Grace McCleen
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Kurzbeschreibung

1. März 2012

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 might see rubbish, Judith sees possibility. Bullied at school, she finds solace in making a model of the Promised Land -- little people made from pipe cleaners, a sliver of moon, luminous stars and a mirror sea -- a world of wonder that Judith calls The Land of Decoration. Perhaps, she thinks, if she makes it snow indoors (using shaving foam and cotton wool and cellophane) there will be no school on Monday...

Sure enough, when Judith opens her curtains the next day, the world beyond her window has turned white. She has performed her first miracle. And that's when her troubles begin.

With its intensely taut storytelling and gorgeous prose, The Land of Decoration is a heartbreaking story of good and evil, belief and doubt. Its author, Grace McCleen, is a blazing new talent in contemporary literature.


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Produktinformation

  • Gebundene Ausgabe: 304 Seiten
  • Verlag: Chatto & Windus; Auflage: First Edition, First Printing (1. März 2012)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 070118681X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0701186814
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 16,2 x 24,2 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 259.902 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

"This is an intensely personal story, but told with a lightness of touch and air of magic. But most of all, the novel is - clearly and excitingly - the work of a major new writer, which promises much more to come." (Nigella Lawson Mail on Sunday)

"Book of the year - both sinister and sharply intriguing, with a completely convincing 11-year-old narrator caught in fundamentalism, school persecution and the edge of the miraculous." (A S Byatt The Guardian)

"Grace McCleen's writing is deep, fantastical and powerful ... She has been able to observe a fascinating world with generosity, wonder and spirit. A wonderful gem of a debut" (Viv Groskop Independent on Sunday)

"This extraordinary tale of one little girl's End Times grabbed me by the throat. The Land of Decoration is part social observation and part crazy mysticism, held together by a brutally real story of parent-child love" (Emma Donoghue, author of 'Room')

"Loveable, unique and thrillingly uncatergorisable... This is an extraordinary and peculiarly haunting novel" (Chris Cleave Financial Times)

Werbetext

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.

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In diesem Buch (Mehr dazu)
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen UNFORGETTABLE! 18. April 2012
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
We read, "My name is Judith McPherson. I am ten years old. On Monday a miracle happened. That is what I'm going to call it. And I did it all." Now, that's an extraordinary statement for anyone to make, let alone a little girl. But then, The Land of Decoration is an extraordinary story. It is affecting, profound, unforgettable.

Judith is a precocious schoolgirl who is growing up with her Bible reading/quoting widowed father among Christian fundamentalists who believe Armageddon is just around the corner. She's ostracized and bullied by her classmates because of her beliefs. Judith finds comfort in her room, a place where she has created a world with objects she has found and bits of junk - a shoelace is a garden hose, rivers are made of crepe paper, plastic wrap and tinfoil, houses are made with chocolate-dip-cookie cartons, matchboxes. After she has finished her make believe world Judith borrows from Ezekiel, looks at it and sees that it is good.

It is in this atmosphere that Judith reaches the conclusion that she can talk with God, actually carry on a conversation. Not only that but she believes that she can perform miracles by rearranging or changing her small world. What she believes to be her first miracle is a surprising snow storm that closes the roads and school. Thus, she is protected from an especially frightening bully. However, as time passes the bully and his friends become more aggressive in their actions against the McPherson's and Judith escalates her "miraculous" happenings.

In time Judith learns there are consequences involved in the choices she has made. Now, what can she or should she do?

Highly recommended.

- Gail Cooke
War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?
5.0 von 5 Sternen Am Stück gelesen 21. November 2013
Von erika
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Ein sehr gutes Buch, Es wurde mir von meiner Kollegin empfohlen, sie hat es in deutsch, ich es in englisch gelesen, wunderbar. Mal kein Krimi, aber spannend, nicht kitschig. Es ist auch kein Fantasy, was ich nach den ersten Seiten befürchtete.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  55 Rezensionen
36 von 37 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A great story ... I wished I could climb in to help. 30. Januar 2012
Von Julie Lovisa - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
At the crux of The Land Of Decoration is the relationship of a girl, her father, and their religious beliefs. Judith is a 10-year old girl who has been raised by her widowed father to believe that they are living in the end days. They go out canvassing neighborhoods, passing out religious pamphlets that warn people about Armageddon. They read Bible passages every evening and 'ponder' upon them. In her bedroom, Judith has built an entire world out of scraps she's found in the garbage, on the ground, or anywhere she finds something that could be useful. When she begins to be tormented by a bully at school, she prays for snow so that she will have to miss school and blankets The Land of Decoration with pretend snow ... a freak October snowstorm falls on their city. When she wishes for the snow to stop and removes the snow from her Land, the snow miraculously stops, and thus Judith begins to believe that she has the power to cause miracles and make things happen. One day, the voice of God starts to speak to her inside of her head (or is it her own imagination?) and she wishes for payback for the boy who has been bullying her. Whatever she makes the people in her Land do, happens in its own form in real life ... sort of like a city of voodoo ... but the results aren't exactly what Judith has been hoping for.

As the factory where her father works goes on strike and he crosses the picket line, and the bullying begins to pass into more dangerous territory, Judith's thoughts take on darker and darker tones. She doesn't know what to do about the things God is telling her or about the lack of faith in their fundamentalist worldview that her father begins to exhibit. As she descends into near hopelessness, I wanted to climb inside the book and do something to help her with her confusion and pain. And that, to me, is the mark of a great book ... caring so much about the characters that you wish you could be there in the story with them. This is a look at life through the eyes of a child; one full of the brutal honesty and sad hope of a girl who thinks that she can fix everything through faith.
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen The tangles of illusion, imagination and faith..... 19. April 2012
Von Tracy Marks - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
How fitting that Grace McCleen's LAND OF DECORATION begins: "In the beginning there was an empty room, a little bit of space, a little bit of time. I said, `I am going to make fields,' and I made them from place mats, carpet, brown corduroy and felt. Then I made rivers from crepe paper, plastic wrap and shiny tin foil......and I saw that they were good."

The narrator, Judith, is a ten year old girl, both precocious and deluded, obsessed with creating her own "Land of Decoration" (the Promised Land according to the book of Ezekiel) out of scraps and doodads, some made from past belongings of her deceased mother.

Discovering that events such as a snowstorm that she shapes in her imaginary world manifest in the external world, and believing that she hears the voice of God commanding her, Judith becomes convinced that she can create miracles. But the God she worships and obeys is a wrathful God, a God of vengeance rather than compassion.

Judith's father, rigidly evangelistic, and consumed with his own sadness and conflicts, is unresponsive to his daughter's needs, and angered by her overactive imagination. "I don't want to hear any more about this," he repeatedly tells her. Eventually, the bully Neil Lewis who threatens and terrifies her at school,
torments her father as well, leading to an eventual showdown.

Clearly, THE LAND OF DECORATION is not a light read, and is frequently painful. But the author Grace McCleen brilliantly conveys the experience of Judith, who struggles with such determination to make sense of the hostile world in which she lives.

Judith wanders back and forth between reality and delusion, uncanny insight and misinterpretation, genuine faith and a twisted religiosity that expresses more the consequences of a world without God rather than one illumined by His presence. Feeling completely powerless, she becomes entangled in a web of emotional need, imagination , creativity and religiosity, in a manner which enables her to believe she has the power to alter her world.

Teetering on the brink of schizophrenia, Judith appears at times to lose her bearings completely. But her own search for truth, a teacher who cares, and a father who begins to heal may help her negotiate the rocky road back to sanity and love. For Judith, perhaps the gateway to experience of the true Father begins with the love of the real father, who may have to break down in order to break through - and reach out.

As a psychotherapist myself, who as a child sought refuge from abuse and neglect in creative expression, I am impressed with the sensitivity, depth and believability with which author Grace McCleen portrays Judith's inner life. Surely, having broken free of a narrow, restrictive form of evangelism herself, McCleen must have experienced some of what her young heroine experiences. Unless she wrestled with her own demons in order to gain and maintain her grip on reality, how else could she so convincingly guide us through the labyrinth of Judith's mind?

To potential readers who are Christian and may be wary of the book's subject, be assured that THE LAND OF DECORATION does not attack Christianity or Evangelism per se. Rather it portrays the negative consequences that result from religion becoming twisted, losing its anchor in true faith and love - and the process of disentangling and awakening.

Reading THE LAND OF DECORATION we continually descend into hell, into the anguish within Judith's mind and the desolation of her environment. Not all readers may feel inclined to suffer such torments.

I therefore recommend the book with reservations. It is not for all. But it possesses a savage beauty, a tough and fierce tenderness which will reward readers who have the courage to journey into the fire, withstand its burning, and revel in its light.
19 von 25 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Reality or insanity 16. Februar 2012
Von Frank L. Hicks Jr. - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch
The Land of Decoration is a different type of book in both content and style. Can this ten year old girl create miracles at will? Just what relationship does she really have with her father; with God? Is she really living at the end of time? and will Armageddon happen by the end of the book? Is this book real or fiction? The front cover says it is a novel; the back cover says "a brutally real story of parent-child love." I began to question my own sanity by the time I finished the book. The issue for me is the method of the story telling. The girl presents thoughts of weeds and concrete and color and pieces of things. There is much introspection to such detail it became tedious to read. It is not a normal novel that carries a story. It is a girl thinking; always thing to the point one questions her sanity and one's own. Is this reality thinking for a child? Whether it is or not it is not one I can relate to nor wish to. It was not a fun book to read, at least not for me. This 10 year old is not living in a ten year old world, or even in reality. But this is not my story but the author's, Grace McCleen and she has a right to her story and creating such a strange 10 year old. The writing is very different and I think it is something you will either love of detest. Without giving anything away, the final chapter is instructions for making a hot air balloon. I have no clue how that fits into the story.
6 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen powerful story 22. Februar 2012
Von T. L. Armitage - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
This is a powerful book. You have a little girl and her father. They are part of a religious group that believes the end of the world is coming- and they work to bring their message to those in the community. This little girl is an outcast because of her family's beliefs, and because of her own uniqueness. Her father is a distant man, since the death of her mother, and this little girl is haunted. She believes to be at fault for her mother's death; she believes her father does not love her; she also believes she can hear the voice of God and perform miracles.

This child has created a model of the town, out of various trash and such that she has collected. But she starts to hear a Voice, and she does things to the town and the people in it, and those things come to pass. You are left wondering if this is the voice of God, Satan, or if this child is so "damaged" in life that she is simply hearing voices.

The trials this girl and her father go through come to a climactic moment of strength. This is one powerful, intense book, covering topics such as faith and family.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen UNFORGETTABLE! 18. April 2012
Von Gail Cooke - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
We read, "My name is Judith McPherson. I am ten years old. On Monday a miracle happened. That is what I'm going to call it. And I did it all." Now, that's an extraordinary statement for anyone to make, let alone a little girl. But then, The Land of Decoration is an extraordinary story. It is affecting, profound, unforgettable.

Judith is a precocious schoolgirl who is growing up with her Bible reading/quoting widowed father among Christian fundamentalists who believe Armageddon is just around the corner. She's ostracized and bullied by her classmates because of her beliefs. Judith finds comfort in her room, a place where she has created a world with objects she has found and bits of junk - a shoelace is a garden hose, rivers are made of crepe paper, plastic wrap and tinfoil, houses are made with chocolate-dip-cookie cartons, matchboxes. After she has finished her make believe world Judith borrows from Ezekiel, looks at it and sees that it is good.

It is in this atmosphere that Judith reaches the conclusion that she can talk with God, actually carry on a conversation. Not only that but she believes that she can perform miracles by rearranging or changing her small world. What she believes to be her first miracle is a surprising snow storm that closes the roads and school. Thus, she is protected from an especially frightening bully. However, as time passes the bully and his friends become more aggressive in their actions against the McPherson's and Judith escalates her "miraculous" happenings.

In time Judith learns there are consequences involved in the choices she has made. Now, what can she or should she do?

Highly recommended.

- Gail Cooke
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