Come, Thou Tortoise

  • Title: Come, Thou Tortoise
  • Author: Jessica Grant
  • ISBN: 9780307397553
  • Page: 294
  • Format: Paperback
  • Come Thou Tortoise A delightfully offbeat story that features an opinionated tortoise and an IQ challenged narrator who find themselves in the middle of a life changing mystery Audrey a k a Oddly Flowers is living quiet
    A delightfully offbeat story that features an opinionated tortoise and an IQ challenged narrator who find themselves in the middle of a life changing mystery.Audrey a.k.a Oddly Flowers is living quietly in Oregon with Winnifred, her tortoise, when she finds out her dear father has been knocked into a coma back in Newfoundland Despite her fear of flying, she goes to himA delightfully offbeat story that features an opinionated tortoise and an IQ challenged narrator who find themselves in the middle of a life changing mystery.Audrey a.k.a Oddly Flowers is living quietly in Oregon with Winnifred, her tortoise, when she finds out her dear father has been knocked into a coma back in Newfoundland Despite her fear of flying, she goes to him, but not before she reluctantly dumps Winnifred with her unreliable friends Poor Winnifred When Audrey disarms an Air Marshal en route to St John s we begin to realize there s something, well, odd about her And we soon know that Audrey s quest to discover who her father really was and reunite with Winnifred will be an adventure like no other.Excerpt Winnifred is old She might be three hundred She came with the apartment The previous tenant, a rock climber named Cliff, was embarking on a rock climbing adventure that would not have been much fun for Winnifred Back then her name was Iris Cliff had inherited Iris from the previous tenant Nobody knew how old Iris was or where she had come from originally Now Cliff was moving out He said, Would you like a tortoise I would not say no to a tortoise, I said.I was alone in Portland and the trees were giant I picked her up and she blinked at me with her upside down eyelids I felt instantly calm Her eyes were soft brown Her skin felt like an old elbow I will build you a castle, I whispered With a pool And I was true to my word.From the Hardcover edition.

    • Come, Thou Tortoise ¦ Jessica Grant
      294 Jessica Grant
    • thumbnail Title: Come, Thou Tortoise ¦ Jessica Grant
      Posted by:Jessica Grant
      Published :2019-05-08T03:58:44+00:00

    About Jessica Grant


    1. Jessica Grant is a Canadian writer, whose debut novel Come, Thou Tortoise won the 2009 Winterset Award and the 2009 Books in Canada First Novel Award.She lives in St John s, Newfoundland and Labrador.Jessica Grant is a member of Newfoundland s Burning Rock Collective members include Michael Winter and Lisa Moore Her first collection of short stories, Making Light of Tragedy, includes a story that won both the Western Magazine Award for Fiction and the Journey Prize.


    650 Comments


    1. This book became one of my favourites of 2010, and if there's one book I would recommend to you right now, it would be this one. Quirky, clever, hilarious, original, poignant, touching, flat-out brilliant all comes to mind in describing Come, Thou Tortoise. It was a random purchase for me, bought on a whim - I didn't know anything about it but I've always loved tortoises and it sounded interesting. Only goes to show how spontaneous book buying, with no research, can reap great rewards!Such a bri [...]

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    2. 3 ½ starsI would not say no to“Did you like this book?” but I would have to add that I wanted to like it more. I would not say no to… is an oft-repeated line throughout this 400+ page debut novel by Jessica Grant. Having said that, there is much to like about Come, Thou Tortoise: it is unique; at times more-than-amusing; and it is definitely a light-hearted read. Audrey Flowers, the primary narrator of the story, is affectionately – and appropriately – referred to as Oddly by her fath [...]

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    3. I really, really loved and enjoyed this book. What a delightful, adorable read with wonderful characters be they human, tortoise or mouse! I was hooked right from the start and fell in love with Audrey (Oddly) Flowers and her father Walter and Uncle Thoby. I especially loved the author's unique writing style. A poignant story full of humour and wit that I found hard to put down. I got this from the library but I would not say no to owning this book and reading it again and again. ;)

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    4. Honestly, I don't know if I have the words to do this novel justice. As I said a few short weeks ago, I bought this book because I just couldn't resist. Essentially, it just sidled up to me and said, "Take me home with you." So, I did.My partner, who was with me when I bought the book, asked me what it was that I found so appealing and I couldn't explain other than to say, I just know I'll like it. He was skeptical. I guess it doesn't look like other books I just *had* to buy. Nor is it by an au [...]

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    5. I love this book! The narrators (Audrey and Winnifred) are hilarious, sweet, and real. They fear things that I fear, but more importantly, they rejoice in things I love - word play and puns :)Although the subject matter is actually quite dark (all the more realistic for the majority of us), this book is full of mirth and had me laughing out loud in bed. Audrey's trials, though sometimes heart-wrenching, often end up with hilarious results. The case of the missing mouse (cheeky souris) and the ne [...]

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    6. this is one odd little book. and i mean that as a compliment.i love that she loves corkscrews because they embrace the essence of both a ballerina and a weapon. think about it.i love that she smells soap and runs to buy fudge.i love that she knows snowflakes are prisms, and that she has a snowshovel that makes imprints of a flower with every load of snow she heaves from the sidewalk to the bank. i love that the tortise gets a voice. i am slightly disconcerned that i relate more to the tortise's [...]

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    7. "It is surprisingly easy to lose your front tooth." For those of you who know me, you understand that I could not agree more. Then when the author followed up that line with, "He said the reason it was important to read was so I'd get all the jokes out there in the world," she had my undivided attention.This book isn't easily summarized (happily)--so you really should just pick it up and start in--and then thank yourself for enjoying a true original. I love that this book enjoys playing around w [...]

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    8. I loved the title and could not wait to read the book just based on that even though I didn't know anything else about it. Once in a while as I was reading it, I felt underwhelmed and unexcited but spurred myself on in the belief that a book with a tortoise in it could not disappoint. I did enjoy reading it because of the wordplay Audrey and her family get into. That her Uncle Thoby calls her "Oddly" instead of "Aubrey" brings about some interesting sentences. Oddly, we have to go to the airport [...]

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    9. PUB. DATE: February 2010GENRE: Literary FictionPLOT SUMMARY: Audrey grew up in St. John's Newfoundland but a brief romance led her to Portland, Oregon, where she is living when she finds out that her father has had a coma. She returns home in a hurry only to find out that her father has already died. She and her uncle, who has lived with her and her father since she was young, grieve the loss and try to put their lives back together. Also, Audrey inadvertently investigates an old family mystery. [...]

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    10. The opening pages of Newfoundlander Jessica Grant's promising debut novel are disarming. Literally.Audrey (aka Oddly) Flowers, terrified of flying to begin with, disarms an air marshal on a flight from her adopted Oregon back to her hometown of St. John's. She is going home because her beloved father has been bashed with a Christmas tree and is in a coma.Next we learn that Audrey has left Winnifred, the titular tortoise that she inherited from an ex-boyfriend, back in Oregon.But the distance bet [...]

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    11. One of the narrators of this book is a tortoise. Do you know me? Can you spell “smitten”? Also, said tortoise lives in Portland, and I was just there and learned how to pronounce Willamette a few short weeks ago, and the human narrator’s nickname is Oddly and she’s from Newfoundland. In short, the book’s infrastructure would have won me over all on its own, and I haven’t even started talking about the story and the GENIUS way it’s told. I’m going to tell you about it. Are you rea [...]

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    12. There is a video I saw of Jessica Grant speaking of this book, and she says something to the effect of - the mysteries that the narrator (and main character, Audrey) is preoccupied with and trying to solve through the book are different than the ones the reader will be preoccupied with - and that, for me, sums up the beauty of this book.First, the prose is fantastic in a way that makes you smile as you're reading, without realizing you're smiling. The wordplay and inside jokes and random referen [...]

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    13. Non ricordo come sono arrivata a questo romanzo (ormai è una costante) ma sono molto contenta di averlo letto. Come Thou, Tortoise è una storia un po' atipica, e inizialmente, come per We are family non ero riuscita a farmi prendere (non ha aiutato il fatto di perdermi ogni tanto fra gli innumerevoli giochi di parole) ma il parallelo è continuato, infatti la protagonista Audrey (Oddly) Flowers e la sua testuggine Winnifred mi sono piaciute sempre di più. Il confronto con We are family non è [...]

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    14. I was completely charmed by the writing. The story of Oddly (Audrey) Flowers is crafted as well as I imagine one can do it. Jessica Grant knows how to entertain. How to tease. She knows that a function of humour (I actually laughed out loud) is to pave the way for pathos. She understands that without making her readers fall in love with her characters (if only I were 40 years younger), the story becomes inevitably mundane. She knits her plot like it was a game of Clue seemingly random, haphazard [...]

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    15. I wish I could give this 4.5 stars. I can't give it 5 stars because I can't rank it amongst my all-time favourite books, but I really enjoyed it. It took me a few chapters to get into it, because it's hard for me to get used to books that don't use quotations in conversations. But once I got used to that, I realized the author's use of this tool really helped to get into the head of the protagonist. One of the main reasons I enjoyed this book so much is because the characters are all so lovable, [...]

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    16. I'm in love with this book. It was so unique and such a good story. I've read some reviews where they felt that Audrey's narration was annoyingbut I thought it was great. I felt that I really knew the character through the quirky narration. It seemed to me that her quirkyness might have evolved out of some learning disability she has, but I loved the play on words and this kind of secret language that she had with her father and Uncle Thoby. I loved how the two of them encouraged Audrey's way of [...]

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    17. I also wouldn't say no to a tortoise. You probably would have difficulty refusing too when that tortoise is the sassy, intelligent, and powerful Winnifred. Forced to live with a struggling thespian, Winnifred recounts better days, the ones spent travelling as a dashboard tortoise across the USA and living with current owner (tenant), Audrey Flowers. She was hastily dropped off when Audrey was called to return home (St. John's): Her father was in a coma. Dealing with heartbreak and not quite fitt [...]

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    18. When I first bought this I actually really bought it cuz it was on sale and it had a turtle on the cover, but the book ended up being alot more complicated and deep then it looks! This book was told in more tan one perspective. Firstly it was told in the perspective of Audrey Flowers. However there were a few chapters where her pet turtle had some insight. Despite how funny that sounds and all the humour thrown in the book you can go from laughing to having a tear in your eye. Audrey herself is [...]

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    19. I knew I had to read this book when I read the front flap:Here's a bit of information about our heroine, Audrey Flowers, which may come in handy while reading this book:- she applies the rules of the board game Clue to help her with many of life's quandries- she's terminally afraid of flying- she finds comfort in making lists, lots and lots of lists- her tortoise, Winnifred, often ponders Shakespearean speeches and the nature of exponentsSet mostly in St. John's, Newfoundland, where Audrey retur [...]

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    20. I loved this book so,so much. I was initially drawn to it because, having always had a fondness for tortoises, the prospect of a book narrated in part by one was too intriguing to pass up. I went into this expecting a lighthearted, funny read, but found a real emotional depth beneath all the humor that took me by surprise. For a book so filled with quirky characters and absurd situations there is quite an exquisite subtlety of emotion here; of love and loss and fear and redemption. To interweave [...]

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    21. Call me crazy, but I enjoy a plot. It doesn't have to be deep or life-changing, but a plot is required. You can imagine my joy when discovered that this book did, in fact, have a plot and it began on page 362. Apparently this book is listed as both humour and mystery, yet it was neither. Audrey spent a lot of the book reflecting on her life at 7 years old yet, when she wrote as an adult, her voice remained child-like. There was no character development. There were chapters where her pet tortoise [...]

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    22. Jessica Grant’s debut novel is the best thing I’ve read this year. It’s about love, loss, family and home – without mush or predictability. Her writing is truly original – humour abounds, yet it’s poignant without being sentimental. Everything I look for in a book is here – interesting characters, surprising revelations, poetic wordplay. And funny, funny, funny. If you don’t like this book I don’t want to know you.

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    23. MIRANDA The strangeness of your story putHeaviness in meOSPEROShake it off. Come on;We'll visit Caliban my slave, who neverYields us kind answer.MIRANDA'Tis a villain, sir,I do not love to look onOSPERO But, as 'tis,We cannot miss him: he does make our fire,Fetch in our wood and serves in officesThat profit us. What, ho! slave! Caliban!Thou earth, thou! speakLIBAN [Within] There's wood enough withinOSPEROCome forth, I say! there's other business for thee:Come, thou tortoise! when?In the obituary [...]

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    24. Read this book. Use each line like a climbing rope to pull your self further in. Twine Christmas lights around the rope for light and read on with a sense of wonder. For no one thinks like Oddly/Audrey and no one else could navigate you through her losses and her loves as she does. Her narrative voice is original and it makes this book. It makes it wonderfully. I had forgotten that the brain has geography. The human brain in 1 400 cubic centimeteres of geography. Our heads fit inside airplane wi [...]

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    25. A very lovable book with an endearing protagonist. We join Audrey (Oddly) Flowers as she flies from Portland, Oregon, to her hometown of St. John's, Newfoundland, where her dear old dad is in a coma, and her life is about to change. The book is spent mostly with Audrey as she tries to come to grips with her new life and delves through her memories of the past. There are also interludes spoken by Winnifred, Audrey's tortoise, who has been left behind in Portland with friends of Audrey's.Even thou [...]

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    26. It was really good! Very sweet, and the main character is endearing. I'm glad I was slow on the uptake and figured out the mystery only a few pages before Audrey did.My only small, teeny-tiny complaint is a bit of an affectation in the writing style where she never uses question marks to indicate questions. She also doesn't use quotations for when people are speaking, but I think I've seen this in other "modern" writers. I dimly recall Miriam Toews doing the same thing in The Flying Troutmans.Sa [...]

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    27. One of the highlights of my summer reading so far, this book recounts the experiences of a young woman, Audrey, called back from the west coast (US) to Newfoundland when her father falls into a coma. She has to leave her tortoise, Winnifred, with friends and good chunks of the book revolve around her checking in with her friends about the tortoise, and her longing to be reunited with Winnifred. The remainder of the book involves Audrey's discoveries about her family in some very humorous ways.Th [...]

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    28. This lovely first novel by Canadian author Jessica Grant has two narrators: Audrey Flowers, native of St. Johns, Newfoundland and lately of Portland, Oregon; and Winnifred (aka Iris) her tortoise.Audrey gets a call from her uncle back in Newfoundland telling her that her father has been hit by a Christmas tree protruding from a passing vehicle and is now in a coma. Audrey leaves Winnifred with friends (although she worries about her a lot) and has adventures on the way home.Once getting home to [...]

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    29. i am not really sure how i feel about this story, or rather, how to review this novel - i am still digesting the read. it starts out quite quirky and lightbut this is a very layered and nuanced story which has quite a serious heart. i was impressed by the book, and the fact this is grant's debut novel - wonderful accomplishment. i am also a sucker for newfoundland literature! (yay!) i greatly enjoyed the characters, and particularly fell in love with winnifred - the co-narrating tortoise. but by [...]

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    30. I had this on my bookshelf for a couple of years before giving it a go. It took a little while for me to get into it, but after about 1/8 of the way through, I found myself savouring it one chapter at a time just before bed. From quirky and absolutely astute observations about things like fluffing up a mouse's bangs, and what it feels like to crawl into bed wearing your jeans (not good), to the speech mannerisms like "Holy lada", and "I would not say no to [coffee, a tortoise, etc.]", Audrey ge [...]

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