Wednesday, June 12, 2019

The Road to Grantchester

The Road to Grantchester is the newest Grantchester novel by James Runcie. Released 7th May 2019 from Bloomsbury, it's 336 pages and available in hardcover, paperback, ebook, and audio formats.

Although this is the seventh book in the series, it's a prequel and develops Sidney Chambers' life during and after WW2. The book deals with his loss of innocence in war and maturation as well as the often fraught road along the way to his religious calling. The book is divided into four sections (War, Peace, Faith, Love) delineating his own pilgrim's progress from the hellishness of war and personal loss through to his personal enlightenment and re-purposing his life in service to others.

This could have been a very very heavy and potentially pompous book. However, Runcie's deftness and expertise with everything technical in his writing as well as an unerring ear for dialogue and dramatic tension turn this into a sublime read. I really enjoyed every single page.

All of the books have had a somewhat melancholy feeling for me. They're all so exquisitely well written that the misty melancholy jazzy feeling is part and parcel of the books' appeal in some way and I wouldn't change anything about them. I don't think I'd recommend binge reading them though, that might be a bit much.

Five stars. This one is my favourite of the series to date.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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