Winter’s tale by

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There was a white horse, on a quiet winter morning when snow covered the streets gently and was not deep, and the sky was swept with vibrant stars, except in the east, where dawn was beginning in a light blue flood.
Mark Helprin - Winter's Tale - c.1983 - pg.3

Peter Lake was once in training to be a mechanic, but a tragedy meant that he was cast out of that life, and found himself with the Short Tails. A New York gang run by Pearly Soames. There he became a master burglar. But he went against Pearly and so the Short Tails are now after him. He keeps running, they keep chasing. But then Peter finds himself a white horse, and now he can escape all the faster, and return again. Because where else can a burglar live and work but in New York?

Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin

Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin

I initially requested this from the library because of the group read, but I started late and never really got around to participating. My bad. But I did read the book, so that’s something, right :)

Reading this book reminded me a lot of Little, Big by John Crowley[1] as it had that big sprawling feel to it. I also had very little clue what was going on. Well, that’s not quite true, I knew what was going on, but I had no clue what it was all about. Unlike Little, Big though I actually enjoyed this book. I won’t say I loved it because that would be going to far, but, while reading it, I liked it. I wasn’t rushing back to it though, which is why it took me so long to get through it. But it is a book that rewards a slow read. And I think would be even more rewarding to reread.

This is a book filled with beautiful images. In places it is funny. It is moving. But it is too long, and, it talks around the point in a lot of places. Basically Show Spoiler ▼

So, it has many beautiful images, but as a whole it just didn’t work for me. And yet there are so many beautiful passages and bits to it that I can’t say that I didn’t enjoy it.

I would like to give it another go at some point, and it is perfect for a winter read.

Other reviews: The Sheila Variations ; Chamber 4 ; Figgy

Linknotes:
  1. – which I didn’t like
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