Friday, June 12, 2009

Book Review -- Ella Minnow Pea

Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark Dunn

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars

Ella Minnow Pea
(get it LMNOP?) is an homage to all things alphabetic and lexiconic. Nollop, a small fictional island town, (home to Nevin Nollop, the author of the pangram, The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog), becomes a police state when the town “High Council” starts outlawing the use of letters as they fall off the town square statue. What follows is a clever and ingenious use of language between the residents as they try to circumvent the newly adopted ordinances.

Books of this nature generally go over my head. And, I must say, I’m sure there was tons of symbolism in this novel that did just that (why did I have visions of Nazi Germany floating thru my head?). Towards the end of the novel when they were speaking phonetically, I had a tough time following the story -- it took my brain too long to decipher what they were saying. But it was cute, and occasionally, I did find I was chuckling to myself. And if you are an etymologist – this is totally a book for you.

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