21 November 2013

Thursday Tea: The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton

The Luminaries by Eleanor CattonThe Book: I'm currently reading Eleanor Catton's The Luminaries. Although I'm about 3.5 hours into the audio (about 100 pages of print), I'm still trying to figure out what's happening. I don't mean that in a bad way: I'm in the stage of getting to know the characters and the circumstances and waiting to see how everything is going to interconnect. I have a long way to go: the audio is 26 hours long (800+ print pages).

Here's what I do know: In the 1860s, New Zealand was the place to be if you wanted to make your fortune panning for gold. But what sorts of people risked the long and dangerous voyage, leaving everything familiar behind, to land at the ends of the earth and try to create a complete new life?

Thomas Moody has his own reasons for taking on the journey, some of which he reveals on his very first night in Hokitika to a diverse and secretive group of twelve men. As the storytelling begins, Moody is quickly drawn into a series of local mysteries (murder, possible false identities, theft, deceit, disappearances, and hidden riches) and finds himself bonding with the men who are determined to solve them.

The Tea: I'm always happy when cool weather sets in and I can once again enjoy a pot of tea in the afternoon. This week Mr. BFR brought home Zhena's Gypsy Tea coconut chai, which is a spiced green tea. The company describes it has having "full notes of cardamom, ginger and clove [with a] hint of coconut." I never find green tea to be bold enough for me, but this is a pleasant tea for an afternoon pick-me-up. As always, I drink it without sugar or milk.

The Assessment: Although the men Thomas Moody meets do indeed drink tea (and even trade in it), I sincerely doubt any of them would choose coconut chai on purpose. In fact, they would just as likely go for wine or spirits as for dark, black tea, even during the day.

What About You? Have you read The Luminaries? If so, what did you think? Booker Prize worthy? Are you drinking anything interesting these days? And what are you reading this week?

Thursday Tea was the brainchild of Anastasia at Here There Be Books.
Published by Hachette Book Group / Little, Brown 2013
ISBN-13: 9780316074315
Source: Review (see review policy)
Copyright © cbl for Beth Fish Reads, all rights reserved (see review policy)
FTC: I buy all teas myself, I am not a tea reviewer.


rhapsodyinbooks 11/21/13, 6:59 AM  

I really want to read something set in New Zealand. But not with coconut chai. No, never. Not even dosed with sugar and milk.

Unknown 11/21/13, 8:55 AM  

I've been curious about this book. I'm just drinking regular ol' Lipton, right now.

(Diane) bookchickdi 11/21/13, 9:54 AM  

I would like to read The Luminaries, I have heard so many interesting things about it. I just bought some of Oprah's Favorite Maharaja Chai Oolong from Teavana for my sister-in-law's birthday. We tried it in store and it was delicious.
An afternoon tea is so enjoyable now that the weather is turning cooler. I like one just before i start dinner. (No milk, but a packet of truvia please)

Jenn's Bookshelves 11/21/13, 10:44 AM  

Really looking forward to what you think of the audio. The page count is quite daunting so I think audio is the route I shall take.

Daryl 11/21/13, 2:04 PM  

interestingly i was reading an article, an interview with the author in the NY Times it made me curious about the book but i will wait for you to finish it first ....

Shannon @ River City Reading 11/21/13, 6:30 PM  

Your tea sounds delicious! I ended up marking this one as a DNF (at least for now) after getting about 20% through. I really felt the drag of the length on this one, and though I've heard it all comes together well, there are just so many other things I had been itching to read that I didn't want to struggle through something I wasn't interested in.

Carole 11/21/13, 8:30 PM  

I've got it on order from the library. We are all so proud of Eleanor here in NZ! And we've got Lorde the 16 year old singer doing well too. We are basking in reflected glory! Cheers

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea 11/22/13, 7:00 AM  

I have the eGalley, but didn't really it was such a long book. I'll probably wait until after the New Year to try it.

bermudaonion 11/22/13, 9:02 AM  

I haven't read it but I've been very curious about it since it won the Booker Prize.

Louise 11/22/13, 5:22 PM  

I haven't seen a blogger review this one yet, just the newspaper reviews. I do know that the structure was important, and I think the chapters get progressive longer (or was it shorter? but I think it was longer), and that the 12 characters, have some sort of zodiac significance. I'll be interested in your thoughts- I didn't know that there was an audio version already for this one. I'd be interested to read it, but do really, really badly with big thick books so am not even trying just at the moment. I'm not much of a tea drinker, but do like a good chai, so your choice of brew sounds interesting too.

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