Thursday, August 20, 2009

Review: Benny & Shrimp by Katarina Mazetti

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Mini Synopsis:
Benny is a thirty something, single, hard working, Swedish dairy farmer living on his failing family farm. His mother whom worked diligently with him to keep the farm running has just passed away. “Shrimp” is a librarian whose intellectually based life is in the near by city. She has just lost her husband of several years.
Although opposites, the two cross paths numerous times with one another in the local cemetery when visiting their dead loved one’s graves. While both note their extreme differences and apparent incompatibility with the other, they soon cannot deny their physical chemistry. An unlikely and complicated relationship develops ending with unexpected and unconventional results.
My short thoughts:
I gave it 4 stars – I loved it.
It was a short, slightly sad, funny, and refreshing romantic story which did not end with everyone living happily ever after. I highly recommend this to any one who wants to easily step away from the conventional romance and who enjoys reading novels with a taste from another culture – or in this case two. I say this because the story was originally written in Swedish and then translated into “British English”. The text reflects this and makes the writing charming and quirky having idioms from both cultures which are interesting and enjoyable.
For further information on the book regarding the author, publishing data, book stats, and Amazon purchasing information for the US/UK/and Canada please see the preview of Benny & Shrimp.

10 comments:

Diane said...

Loved your review, and agreed with your thoughts. I also rated this one 4/5.

Love your header pix; very fun.

Shellie said...

Diane, it was a cute book. I liked that woman in the tub too. It matched the colors of the blog. I thought it was kind of racy but hey you only live once... Thanks for stopping by.

SuziQoregon said...

I skipped straight to the 'short thoughts' because this is on the hold shelf at the library for me to pick up soon. Definitely looking forward to reading this.

Shellie said...

SuziQ - I think you'll like it, short, sweet, and sad - I know what your saying but I do try not to give the entire plot away. :)

Hayduke said...

I also gave it four out of five stars, and thought it was a quick and enjoyable read. There's nothing I like better in a book than interesting and quirky characters, and Benny and Shrimp certainly fit that mold. Thanks for your review.

Shellie (Layers of Thought) said...

Hayduke/Mark -
I wasn't sure you would like the book, but am glad you did.
Thanks for your comment. Post a review of your own and I will link it. :) Take Care

mel u said...

Thanks for the very well done review-I am interested in 21th century novels that depict reading centered persons. As the female lead character is a librarian, do we see much of what she reads or how it effects her relationship to nonreaders?

Shellie (Layers of Thought) said...

mel u -
Thanks for your comment you have a new reader too. :) I make it a point to read all my readers first. Not sure why I had not gotten you in my google reader yet. Are your links active on you profile on the followers pic?
No they aren't so I could not find your site. You may want to check that.
In regard to this book - I do not believe the main character mentions any books specifically within the text. Perhaps a couple of authors which are of course Swedish are mentioned but they did not stand out to me since I unfortunately cannot read Swedish. I do recall mention of some Swedish children's stories or parables.
The relationship between Shrimp and Benny is affected by her reading. Benny can't relate well at all, and it of course complicates things.
This books is a short easy read, so perhaps you should read it?
I have coming up - a book which may fit your description its called The Man who Loved Books too Much. Stay tuned.
I am so glad you commented so that I now have you on my reading list as well. :)

Alexia561 said...

Enjoyed your review! I found this a fun, quirky read as well. Maybe the translation from Swedish to English was part of the charm, but I couldn't tell the book was a translation as it was very well done.

Gave this one 5 out of 5 as I keep finding myself recommending it to friends and co-workers.

Great job!

Shellie (Layers of Thought) said...

Alexia -
Yes I saw your review on twitter and then in google and tried to re-tweet it - I think it worked.
This is a great book and I'm really liking Swedish Translations lately.
Thanks for the comments :)

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