Caroline – Cornelius Medvei

The BookDepository

Five words from the blurb: donkey, relationship, office, chess, fable

This is a lovely little book! It begins as a simple, but engaging story about one man’s bond with a donkey, but it slowly ventures away from reality, leaving you questioning what is true and what has just been invented by the author. It is very cleverly written and it took me a while to work out what was happening. The text is initially littered with fascinating facts about donkeys, but when I found myself wondering whether or not donkeys really can play chess I realised that I’d been had!

The exhilarating novelty of playing chess with a donkey more than made up for the successive defeats, and Caroline was positively skittish when we finished; she butted Arthur playfully in the back as he was returning the chess pieces – marked faintly with the imprint of her teeth – to the box.

My only criticism is the wordMystery” in large type on the cover. I picked this book up because I was in the mood for a bit of crime solving and so was a bit disappointed that I wasn’t able to exercise my brain cells in that way.  

This is a short, but sweet book that could charm even the grumpiest of souls. Anyone who knows me would point out that any book described as “charming” would normally send me running in the opposite direction, but for some reason Caroline didn’t have that effect. I think that this was because the bizarre escapades of the impressively intelligent donkey entertained me in such an original way. I’m afraid I can’t let you know any more about the plot for fear of ruining this lovely little book, but I hope that I have revealed enough to intrigue you.

I recommend it, especially as a gift to animal lovers.

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  1. Dorte H says:

    It does sound charming, but I am glad you have revealed that it is not a mystery of the kind for my blog :D

    1. Jackie says:

      Dorte, I think that crime fans would be disappointed if they tried this one – no murders to be solved here :-)

  2. Jenners says:

    Well, I can’t really say I fully understand how this book might read but it sounds very interesting and different!

    1. Jackie says:

      Jenners, Sorry if I didn’t explain it very well, but it is quite hard to get across. It is such a simple, quick read that I can’t say much about it without ruining it, but I’m pleased that you at least understood that it is different! Just imagine a man having a pet donkey that suddenly becomes amazingly intelligent!!

  3. parrish says:

    I discovered Roberto Bolano, the same way I picked up The Savage Detectives from my local Library, as a light detective type book. Well imagine my surprise. On the plus side, because of that book, I wanted to find out more & in the process discovered book blogs & the whole world of blogging.

    1. Jackie says:

      Parrish, LOL! It is great to know I’m not alone in doing things like that and that we are actually rewarded by discovering fantastic books. What a great story about your introduction to blogging :-)

  4. Ifi says:

    Oh dear. Donkey, charming and chess..mmmm. These are not good blurbs to my ears. But something tells me to maybe give it a try anyway. Please convince us some more Jackie.

    1. Jackie says:

      Ifi, All I can say is that those words don’t appeal to me either. Donkeys are quite nice, but have no special appeal to me,
      charming is a word I hate to see on blurbs and I can’t imagine reading a good book about chess (she says noticing she has a book title ‘Chess’ in her sidebar ;-) )
      This is a very quick read, but so gripping I couldn’t put it down until I completed it. It won’t change your world or the way you look at it, but I think you will be glued to the book for the couple of hours it takes to read it. Pure entertainment and nothing more. It is original too. What more do you want in a book?!

  5. Ifi says:

    Okaaaay. I like “So gripping i couldn´t put it down”. Thanks. Will look out for it when it comes out in paperback though:)


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