Review Blog

Nov 30 2018

The Art of Taxidermy by Sharon Kernot

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The Text Publishing Company, 2018. ISBN 9781925603743
(Ages: 10+) Highly recommended. A hauntingly beautiful journey of self-discovery, loss, grief, and finding beauty even in the darkest times. At eleven years old, Lottie, the daughter of German migrants, is grieving the loss of her mother when she becomes fascinated with collecting dead animals. Trying to revive and recreate these animals, Lottie attempts to preserve them, as she slowly learns the art of taxidermy. In creating beauty out of death, she attempts to hold on to memories of her mother, and work through her grief, all while moving through the milestones of life.
Written in lyrical verse, Sharon Kernot brings Lottie and the supporting characters of this novel to life, much as Lottie attempts to bring her treasures to life through taxidermy over the course of the book. Kernot's use of poetic language brings a special charm to the story and compels the reader to fall in love with Lottie as well as her unique perception of beauty. Filled with symbolism, an appreciation of the Australian landscape and its natural beauty, and most of all, heart, The Art of Taxidermy is a book that will stay with the reader long after they turn the last page.
A brilliant novel with powerful, insightful and authentic characters. A melancholic yet touching read.
Daniella Chiarolli

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