I feel like it’s been about 10 years since I read a novel by Meg Rosoff – it’s probably been longer. As a teenager, I was a massive lover of How I Live Now and Just in Case, both books that introduced me to the YA genre and opened my eyes to just how good the genre can be. I still love YA fiction (weirdly, Meg Rosoff is included in this post!) but I must admit I don’t read half as much from the genre as I used to. I’m trying to rectify this, asking for recommendations and keeping an eye out on authors that I love. I was browsing Netgalley a few days ago and noticed that a Meg Rosoff book was on offer – The Great Godden- naturally, I requested a copy and was lucky enough to have my request accepted by the publisher. I got stuck into the book straight away – I just couldn’t resist taking myself back in time.
The Great Godden Book Review – a YA novel by Meg Rosoff
We are guided through the tale by an unknown narrator – we know very little about their physical being, their gender and their appearance; we do, however, know that they have two sisters and a brother and that they don’t really consider themselves to be all that beautiful. Every year, the narrator and their family drive to the beach and spend the summer holidays there – each with their own hobbies and past times, spending the summer doing their own thing. Our narrator chooses to work – we know that they want to get out of the house and away from the Goddens – both of them, that is. The Goddens have arrived from America – one gorgeous, magically endearing and the other dark and mysterious. Both appeal to the narrator, in seemingly different ways. The narrator’s sister quickly strikes up a relationship with Kit; he’s the gorgeous one, the one everyone wants. The story unravels and Kit’s true character comes to light – how can someone so beautiful be so dangerous?
I loved this story – I fully expected to, considering my love of Meg Rosoff growing up. It’s quite a dark book, inadvertently so, and I found myself really sympathising with the characters- bar one, of course. It’s a very quick read – I read it in a single sitting, and the language is very reliable, warming and intricate. I’d argue it’s the perfect summer holiday read.
Enjoy my The Great Godden Book Review? Order now, released 9th July 2020