Sunday, September 24, 2017

[Review] Shoebox Funeral: Stories from Wolf Creek by Elizabeth Voltz

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Publisher: Animal Media Group
Pages: 265
Source: Publisher for review
Genre: Non-fiction / memoir

Violence | Sexual Content | Profanity

Book Tunes

My Rating
My thoughts

Shoebox Funeral is a carefully crafted compendium filled with precious memories and anecdotes of a childhood spent on a farm. The experiences of Elizabeth Voltz and her ten siblings and parents are shared with delicate eloquence, making this memoir an absolute gem. I loved reading about the myriad many animals that lived on the farm over the years; while their deaths brought about much distress, it was heartwarming to know how well-loved they had been, and the resounding influence that they had on Elizabeth's upbringing is inspiring. 

Published through Animal Media Group, this memoir is painfully gorgeous. Cloth-bound hardcover, perfectly bound, with ribbon marker. Gold-foiling around the cover and spine. And the illustrations! There is even a 'photo album' at the back. There has undoubtedly been so much love put into this book, my heart aches. Many, many thanks go to Brianne for giving me the opportunity to review this book. Little did I know just how much I would love it - I can already see this in my future bookshelves, perhaps reading it with my children one day, peppering them with magical stories of a childhood made full, perpetually surrounded by animals and siblings on a farm.

The language used is relatively simple, and it is easy to believe that you are reading a children's book. The book is broken up into chapters, each telling a story about another animal or creature that deeply affected Elizabeth as a child. For an animal lover like me, this was such a treat, though it was a bit depressing at times.

During my earlier years, I would spend hours glued to the television screen, playing a simulation game about farming: Harvest Moon. I would fantasise about life on a farm, and imagine just how lovely it would be to live off the land, where hard work is rewarded.

Reading this collection has made my childhood self super happy! I loved it, loved it, loved it! Highly recommended if you love animals, farms and short story collections/memoirs that are sure to lift your spirits and warm your heart.


Favourite lines:
"I would sit in the grass on the hillside, gaze fixed on the plots for what felt like hours, saddened by the effect of time both on my memory and on the graves themselves. Each animal I got to know on the farm had their own personality quirks; in fact, they weren't that different from people, just less appreciated. Less respected. I felt they needed an advocate or at least someone to mourn them when they were gone. Every creature deserved acknowledgement, I thought, and to not even receive that was the saddest thing I could imagine. (3)
"The land was like another family member that knew everything that had happened there and could understand and comfort like no one else. The farm was in us, and Wolf Creek ran through our veins like blood. (9)

AUSTRALIA: A&R | Wordery

INTERNATIONAL: Abe Books | Book Depository

I have received this review copy in return for an honest review.

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