I waited and waited for this book to be available in a local bookshop. I was patient, I excercised tolerance and perseverence but all to no avail. Yes, they could order it in but that just meant more waiting. I could have got it from the library. Not my library, not the main library in this town but by requesting it from a branch library and waiting for delivery. I wanted instant gratification in the end and so …. I chose Little hands clapping as my first ever download to my Kobo. I’m going to talk about the joy and delight of my Kobo on another posting but I have to say at this point that Dan Rhodes is a great choice as a test of the little machine.
Dan Rhodes was my best discovery of last year. He writes these bizzare little books which seem so simple but which are deep and layered and complex and lovely. This is the story of a weird and disturbing museum in a quiet suburb in a German city. Above the museum lives an old man who takes care of it, enjoying the cakes that the museum owner brings to their regular meetings but living in austerity and occasionally getting a message from the spiders who share his room as they turn up to be crunched by his teeth while he is asleep. This is a signal to call the Doctor who ‘takes care of the victims’. The Doctor and his dog Hans are integral in the story and they along with the doomed lovers of many varieties, the stories of those who visit the museum are engrossing and gorgeous and will make you smile and the next minute will make you cry.
Dan Rhodes plays with his readers, he takes a meandering journey through the minds and emotional lives of his lovely characters and twists and turns their paths to the end of the book, expect the dark and creepy, the sweet and quirky, expect to feel loved as a reader.
Totally worth the wait and now I want more – and I have it in the form of Timolean Vita come home which is on the Kobo waiting for my attentions.
Here are the other Dan Rhodes books I have loved. Gold and The little white car.