Book Review: I Capture the Castle

dodie

 

Dodie Smith, author of I Capture the Castle, has been recommended by J.K. Rowling. “This book has one of the most charismatic narrators I’ve ever met.”

That was on the cover. Three of my Goodreads friends gave it five stars.  I ordered it from Thrift Books, where you can still get it for $3.59 and free shipping if you order $10 worth of books total.

The book begins with the author sitting with her feet in the kitchen sink and writing in her journal. She lives in England in the country in a small ancient house of ill repair connected to a castle. Her father was once a great author, but has given up writing and earning a living. The family is struggling to make it day to day.

The journal chronicles the life of Cassandra, her sister, brother, her father and her step mother, a colorful character who sometimes used to be a famous nude model. The main part of the story begins when a new wealthy family moves into the manse part of the castle. Fortunately, they have two sons slightly older than Cassandra and her beautiful sister, Rose.

It is more of a novel about Cassandra growing up than it is a romance. I rarely read novels, choosing instead to keep my nose in at least a couple nonfiction books at all times. I find novels objectionable because they ask me to suspend my disbelief far too much. This one does not do that, and remains enjoyable and entertaining.

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