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The Lollipop Shoes [Paperback]

Joanne Harris
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 19.95 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

May 20 2008
'Who died?' I said. 'Or is it a secret?'

'My mother, Vianne Rocher.'

Seeking refuge and anonymity in the cobbled streets of Montmartre, Yanne and her daughters, Rosette and Annie, live peacefully, if not happily, above their little chocolate shop. Nothing unusual marks them out; no red sachets hang by the door. The wind has stopped – at least for a while. Then into their lives blows Zozie de l’Alba, the lady with the lollipop shoes, and everything begins to change….

But this new friendship is not what it seems. Ruthless, devious and seductive, Zozie de l’Alba has plans of her own – plans that will shake their world to pieces. And with everything she loves at stake, Yanne must face a difficult choice; to flee, as she has done so many times before, or to confront her most dangerous enemy…..

Herself.


From the Hardcover edition.

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The Lollipop Shoes + Chocolat + Five Quarters Of The Orange: A Novel
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Harris revisits characters from 1999's bestselling Chocolat in this equally delectable modern fairy tale. More than four years have passed since Vianne Rocher pitted her enchanted chocolate confections against the local clergy's interpretation of Lent in smalltown France; since then, Vianne has renounced magic, changed her name to Yanne Charbonneau and moved with her two daughters to Paris's Montmartre district. There, Yanne embraces conformity and safety, much to the dismay of her increasingly troubled older daughter, Anouk. When Anouk becomes entranced with Zozie de l'Alba, an exotic itinerant who happens upon a job at the new shop, and the relationship grows increasingly sinister, Yanne must call up all of Vianne's powers, culinary and mystical, to save her family. Harris again structures the narrative (told in alternate chapters by Zozie, Yanne and Anouk) around a liturgical season (in this case Advent). Harris gives fans much to savor in this multilayered novel, from the descriptions (including Yanne's mouthwatering chocolate confections, Zozie's whimsical footwear and Anouk's artistic efforts) to the novel's classic, enduring theme of good vs. evil—and the difficulty of telling the difference. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“This is Harris’s best novel to date.” —Financial Times

Chocolat was a hard act to follow but Harris has managed it in style.” —Daily Express

“One of Britain’s most popular novelists.” —Daily Mail

“She is so terrific, she can write about anywhere, anything, anyone.” —Daily Telegraph

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Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Sumptuous Box of Chocolates July 26 2007
Format:Hardcover
Think of free spirit Vianne personified in the film version of "Chocolat" by the lovely Juliette Binoche blowing into a small French village on the north wind, tempering the richest, darkest bittersweet chocolate, fashioning it into truffles rolled into powdered balls infused with her special brand of domestic magic and the sole intent of changing people's lives. Remember her daughter, Anouk, with the part phantom-familiar Pantoufle trailing at her heels desiring only a permanent home like any other child. Add to the mix four-year-old Rosette, a special child who doesn't speak, but perpetrates "accidents" that cannot be explained or ignored and change the venue from Lansquenet, the Midi hill town's chocolaterie to the urban "village" chocolate shop located on the butte of Montemartre crowned by the white marbled Sacre Coeur de Paris. In "The Lollipop Shoes," novelist Joanne Harris whips up another batch of pure enchantment, this time bringing her white "witch" protagonist's special skills out of the closet while pitting her against a red-shoed force much darker than the "kindly" but bothersome convention and respectability of Lansquenet's traditional religious contingency.

The questionable Zozie could pass for the old Vianne with her bohemian attitude, bon-bon colored costumes and her uncanny ability to tantalize the Parisian shoppe's clientele with their "favorite" confection. Impressed with the latent supernatural talent possessed but untried by now preteen Anouk, Zozie intends to manipulate Vianne's lapse into conformity to her own advantage by mimicking Vianne's own gentle yet paranormal methods of persuasion.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Joanne Harris: The Girl with No Shadow April 3 2013
By Hana
Format:Paperback
The book is very serious writing, regardless of the topic. The authoress has an extraordinary ability of finding the unusual in the usual. The enchantment of making and smelling the chocolate, the possibilities for an evil-doer in following the death announcements, the sensitivity to the language, e.g. advent, adventure.
This book has to be read very carefully. There are no fillers. The sentences carry meaning and the language is beautiful. Details are important.
The character of Zozie is not just the negative side of Vianne. The energy, the attraction, the seduction of the chocolate store, was originally carried forward by Vianne, but since she came to Paris, she lost it all. This is a warning. Abandoned posts are going to be occupied. Don't let us abandon the posts!
How well the authoress knows life! The problems of teenage children at school are obviously everywhere the same. The cliques, which engage in excluding others; is it the desire for exclusiveness, or a tool of torture? Because, as Harris writes-children are knives. They don't mean to do so, but they cut.
I have only two objections to this marvelous book.
1. The phantasmagoria towards the end is, somehow, in a different spirit in comparison with the rest of the book. It is too much, whereas the whole book was gearing up for balance.
2.The real mother of Vianne appears suddenly, as if the author wanted to have Vianne's story finished and wrapped up. We, certainly, have known about her before, and that Vianne was abducted, but there was only one mention of this in the previous book, and of some newspaper cuttings in the present book. Yet, there are endless mentions of the woman who brought Vianne up, her instructions, her customs.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  101 reviews
79 of 84 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dark Chocolat April 9 2008
By cbristah - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Joanne Harris's sequel to her sly, clever novel, Chocolat, finds Vianne and her two daughters living in Paris four years after the wind blew them out of the village of Lansquenet. Gone is the magic that enriched their lives and transformed the village, and that is fine by Vianne. Now calling herself Yanne, she only wants her family to be normal and safe, and on the surface, it seems to be. Anouk is now a pre-teen with an early adolescent's normal angst. Her younger sister, Rosette, appears intelligent enough even if she can't talk. And Yanne herself is soon to be engaged to her staid bourgeois landlord. Life couldn't be more ordinary, until the fateful wind blows into their lives a mysterious and exotic woman who seems to know all about "Yanne" and her family. Soon Vianne faces an adversary who threatens everything she holds dear and whose skills are as great as her own.

Although it's a sequel to Chocolat, The Girl With No Shadow is not Chocolat II. It is a darker, grittier story of mothers and daughters, love and loss. Although readers may expect the same Disneyesque charm of the first novel, this contemporary fairy-tale is more in the vein of the Brothers Grimm. My only quibble is I missed the zest of earlier Vianne during most of the story. The villain was a much more compelling creation. Nevertheless, fans who want to follow the characters from Chocolat will enjoy this book.
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Sweet Treat June 17 2007
By Jennifer A. Christy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
While in France last week I discovered The Lollipop Shoes in a book store and read the first two lines on the back cover. Not only was I hooked, I couldn't get the euros out of my pocket fast enough. This is the sequel to Chocolat (one of my favorite novels) and picks up four years after the last story ends. While it is told in the first person from 3 different people I did not find it difficult to decide who was speaking. It is part of the charm of the story.

Joanne Harris has a true knack for narrating the yin and yang in life. She did an amazing job in Chocolat and continues to do so in Lollipop Shoes. Her characters are wonderfully developed and very realistic. I do recommend reading Chocolat first if you want the background of the main characters going into this novel. My interest was held from the first page to the last.

When Ms. Harris uses food in the titles of her books, you are in for a feast. Bon appetit!
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Vianne and Anouk return from the ashes May 6 2008
By Bundtlust - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Joanne Harris's Girl With No Shadow comes a decade after the original novel Chocolat, later made into a feature film (Chocolat (Miramax Collector's Series))starring Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp. Chocolat revolved around the culinary magic of Vianne Rocher, an unorthodox chocolatiere who includes a sprinkle of magic that shakes up the local conservative villagers. In Girl With No Shadow, Vianne, now renamed Yanne Charbonneau, has relocated to Paris after fleeing several other bad situations. She has shunned her magical tendencies, putting away the tarot cards and forbidding incantations by Anouk (renamed Annie), thereby trading her individuality for a stable life at the side of Thierry Le Tresset, wealthy (and stuffy) bachelor.

The novel is told from the (confusing) viewpoint of three different characters: Vianne, Anouk, and Zozie de l'Alba in a narrow timeframe ranging from October 31 to December 24. At times, the three are commenting on events happening on the same day. Vianne's past literally comes back to haunt her in the form of the mysterious Zozie, and the young Anouk is sliding into perilous teenage rebellion, hanging out in cemeteries and engaging in forbidden acts of magic.

The cast of characters is too large to be explored in detail, and even the appearance of an old friend from the original novel is lost in the fray. Having three narrators fails to solidify the action, and it took me a few chapters to clue in that different characters were narrating (the images at the top of the chapters are different for each character). Flashbacks were to actions not covered in the original novel, and the frequent time travel left me confused at the all-too-important omissions of pivotal earlier events such as the birth of Vianne's second child, Rosette, who at four is non-verbal and quite possibly autistic.

Although the descriptions of chocolates are mouthwatering, too often the action felt staged, stale, and not in the magical spirit of the original novel Chocolat. Make no mistake: this is no sweet Chocolat Part Deux; it's dark, gritty, and haunting, wrapped in dark secrets, past injustices, and the desire for revenge that consumes several characters at various points. It's definitely not a feel-good book, although if you enjoyed Vianne's character, you may enjoy The Girl With No Shadow. It's most definitely a reinvention of classic fairy tales for grown-ups.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deliciously wonderful novel! April 30 2008
By Merlin - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
The Girl with No Shadow is an absolutely brilliant sequel to Chocolat.

If you also enjoyed Gentlemen and Players then you'll find this newest novel doubly delightful.

No, the novel is not Disneyesque; but then neither was "Chocolat" really.

More like the Talented Mr.Ripley takes a trip to the Twilight Zone and meets Harry Potter in Paris. :-)

What I found interesting was how the story was told from the perspective of three different characters, leaving you to guess for a few seconds at the beginning of each chapter as to who was now speaking.

The reader is also left tantalizingly guessing, even at the end, at just exactly how effective any of the "magic" really was, or was it all simply scheming and social engineering and the occasional fortutitous or not happenstance.

Joanne Harris has over the years honed and perfected her skills as a writer by producing an unbroken series of novels with an intriguing storyline and an engaging cast of characters. "The Girl with No Shadow" demonstrates convincingly that Ms. Harris continues to get better and better at her craft.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is magical. Literally,. Nov. 28 2011
By Mary E. Trimble - Published on Amazon.com
The Girl with No Shadow (Harper Perennial) by Joanne Harris is a magical book. Literally. Its magic is in the form of witchery in three of the main characters. A sequel to Chocolat, the book's main character, Yanne Charbonneau has changed her name from Vianne Rocher. Her daughter now nine, also has a different name, Anouk. Added is another younger daughter, Rosette, who is possibly autistic. The little French family has been forced to leave their former home and is starting over in Paris.

Yanne continues her vocation as a maker of exquisite chocolates. It's a drab life she leads, but at least she and her daughters are safe. Her shop barely ekes out a living. If it weren't for Thierry, her staid landlord, who has provided living quarters, she wouldn't be able to care for her family.

Thierry asks Yanne to marry him and although she's not in love with him, a solid family life is tempting. But she can't bring herself to agree to marriage. Undaunted, he continues with plans to renovate one of his houses for them.

Along comes Zozie de l'Alba and we know from her first words that she is up to no good. Beautiful and charming, Zozie is an attraction to impressionable Anouk. Although for some time Anouk has realized she's different from other kids, her exposure to Zozie helps her to define her special talent. She, too, is a witch.

Zozie manages to become part of the family, turns the chocolate shop into a bright, sunny place that draws customers in droves.

Just when Yanne least expects it, Roux appears from her past. Although he doesn't know it, he is Rosette's father. Even after four years, he stirs up feelings Yanne has tried unsuccessfully to bury.

Zozie's true colors emerge. Pending danger and ruin become obvious. What tactic will she use this time to alter the lives of those who have trusted her?

If you're a chocolate lover, you'll enjoy the many descriptions of making exotic confections. Joanne Harris uses an interesting technique to spin her tale in that the story is told in three voices, all in first person. It was a bit confusing at first, but I soon noticed each of the three had a unique symbol at the beginning of a chapter.

Though my reading pleasure is normally stories with realistic plots, Harris spins an intriguing yarn. The Girl with No Shadow is a fairy tale for grown-ups. The author's knowledge of chocolate is impressive and the Paris setting extraordinary. Harris's lyrical writing style is a joy and keeps the reader engaged.
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