Today's KDD: Chocolat, by Joanne Harris. Normally $9.99, now $1.99!

81% off, today only! 332 pages, 186 of 252 reviews four stars and above.

Okay, this one is worth having just for the movie tie-in cover with Johnny Depp. Ladies, are you with me? Seriously, though, I loved the movie and I've heard the book is wonderful, though there are apparently differences. This is a definite addition to my Kindle library.

Amazon reviewer Dianna Johnston says "Joanne Harris writes with a skillful, intelligent hand. Sometimes the sentences have to be read twice (what with the big words and all), but the text is pure poetry. This novel builds slowly and takes readers on a magical carpet ride. Definitely recommended to those who enjoy a sweet and sad story, a not regularly written about topic, and a writing style that's beautiful in it's symbolism, clarity and description."


Vivianne Rocher moves to the tiny French town of Lansquenet to open a chocolate boutique, and, suddenly, strange things start to happen. The townspeople begin to eschew the self-righteous gossip of small-town life, and they find the courage to break the rigid codes of provincial behavior. In short, they start enjoying life--all because of the sensual power of chocolate. But the hidebound local priest does not approve of Vivianne, and soon, a power struggle shapes up between the two of them.

Vianne Rocher and her 6-year-old daughter, Anouk, arrive in the small village of Lansquenet-sous-Tannes--"a blip on the fast road between Toulouse and Bourdeaux"--in February, during the carnival. Three days later, Vianne opens a luxuriant chocolate shop crammed with the most tempting of confections and offering a mouth-watering variety of hot chocolate drinks. It's Lent, the shop is opposite the church and open on Sundays, and Francis Reynaud, the austere parish priest, is livid.

One by one the locals succumb to Vianne's concoctions. Joanne Harris weaves their secrets and troubles, their loves and desires, into her third novel, with the lightest touch. There's sad, polite Guillame and his dying dog; thieving, beaten-up Josephine Muscat; schoolchildren who declare it "hypercool" when Vianne says they can help eat the window display--a gingerbread house complete with witch. And there's Armande, still vigorous in her 80s, who can see Anouk's "imaginary" rabbit, Pantoufle, and recognizes Vianne for who she really is. However, certain villagers--including Armande's snobby daughter and Joséphine's violent husband--side with Reynaud. So when Vianne announces a Grand Festival of Chocolate commencing Easter Sunday, it's all-out war: war between church and chocolate, between good and evil, between love and dogma.

Reminiscent of Herman Hesse's short story "Augustus," Chocolat is an utterly delicious novel, coated in the gentlest of magic, which proves--indisputably and without preaching--that soft centers are best. --Lisa Gee, Amazon.co.uk

Features: text-to-speech, X-ray enabled.

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Happy Reading!