Title: Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper, The
Authors: Patrick, Phaedra
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 352
Year: 2016
Language: English
Description: When widower Arthur Pepper, an entrenched creature of routine, plucks up the courage to sort out his beloved wife's belongings, he comes across an expensive gold bracelet that he doesn't recognise. Just what did Miriam get up to before their forty years of marriage? Tracing the provenance of each of the charms takes Arthur on an odyssey that reveals as much about him as it does about Miriam.

A delightfully eccentric and amusing story of self-discovery and the unexpected rewards of throwing off the shackles.

Comments from BDS Reviewers:

"Absolutely delightful. It may be a little light for those preferring a substantial read but I enjoyed it very much."

"Very easy to read, light, relaxing and amusing."

"It has different layers and levels. For example, it can be read superficially or more in-depth, looking at the change in Arthur, his children, his view of himself and his world."

"I'd recommend it as a bit of escapism in this topsy-turvy world!"

"I enjoyed this book very much. It's a light read but very enjoyable and it does cover some interesting topics (eg, a widower adapting to his new life, and how we think about ourselves)."

"Recommended for those looking for a lighter read."

Categories: Fiction, Contemporary, Grief/loss, Love story, Relationships, Uplifting, England, Light style, What's Hot, 2018 Titles


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By: HAMIL 029 2019-06-13 16:02:54
We all found this a light and easy read. It's better if you put credibility to one side - it's hard to believe that Arthur and his wife never talked about the past, and that a charm bracelet could be the foundation for so much detective work. The 'deep meaning' of Arthur's change seems a rather artificial construct. But once you accept the book's limitations, it is unexceptionable and pleasant. A Man Called Ove does something similar much better.

By: AUCK 255 2019-03-20 23:42:11
Light and entertaining. We questioned the credibility of Arthur knowing so little about his wife's interesting history.

By: ROTO 010 2019-03-16 16:32:22
About half of our group really enjoyed this somewhat whimsical book and its meanderings; the other half were definite in not liking it, finding its style & language wanting and thought that it was too light-weight. However, we had a lively discussion about the questions of secrets and communication that it raised.

By: WHANG 015 2019-02-23 15:08:52
Most of our group enjoyed this book as a portrayal of one man's journey through grief via discovery of the life his wife had had before they met, and the amusing and tantalising clues that he followed on the way. The other side of the discussion from those who didn't enjoy the book so much was about some of the contrivances in the stories of the charms which they felt distracted from the other messages in the plot. However we all agreed that it was a good light-hearted read for the summer and the ending was a satisfying one which looked ahead to a more positive future for all.

By: HAMIL 026 2018-07-25 14:48:29
Everyone enjoyed this book. We found the simple writing style appealing and a light relief from some of the more serious books we have had recently. We enjoyed the sense of mystery (what will he uncover next?) and the way Arthur changed in himself and in regard to others. He became a more complete and interesting person. Miriam was an enigma. How did she keep quiet about her experiences before marriage? Characterisations were good - we could almost see Bernadette, her son etc.

By: ASHB 003 2018-07-25 14:44:15
Group members enjoyed the book - an easy read, and we kept turning the pages, enjoying the stories of the charms and characters along the way. While many found the stories to be a little contrived and improbable, it didn't detract significantly from being an enjoyable read.

By: PIOPIO 001 2018-07-25 14:38:49
A light read enjoyed by all. Questions generated good discussion, mostly around how we communicate within families. Some found the plot a little too 'convenient'.

By: TAKA 001 2018-07-25 14:30:21
Everybody enjoyed the book. Delightful and light. Characters are well developed and quirky. Believable? Hmmm - not everybody thought so, especially the tiger story. We agreed that a bit of artistic license was quite the ticket.

By: AUCK 344 2018-07-25 14:27:52
This book was very much enjoyed by our group. Just for a change, it was good to have a 'lighter' read.

By: CHCH 113 2018-07-25 14:26:04
All enjoyed this gentle fable, and the emergence of Arthur Pepper from his grief as he followed the puzzles posed by his late wife's charm bracelet. We chose not to focus on the implausible aspects of the story - instead relating all the laugh out loud moments that we liked the most. Arthur posing nude for a life drawing class was a favourite!

By: GERAL 002 2018-07-25 14:23:06
We all enjoyed this light, at times frivolous story. An easy read with moments of humour and surprise as Arthur unravels the significance of each charm in his wife's life. And a satisfying ending too, as Arthur finds his place in a happy future.

The Book Discussion 
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