Project Warm Heart: Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn

The spring semester is in full swing, and  graduation draws nearer by the second. I’m in no way ready to move on from my safe haven that is Jr. college, but I still have to leave. I’ve taken to reading more books on my list to distract myself from my looming future. I’ve completed another book and promised review from my infamous Buzzfeed list: Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn. This book wasn’t exactly heart-warming, but it was an experience I’m unlikely to forget.

Ella Minnow Pea is about a town located outside of the United States that devotes itself to language and the alphabet. They speak eloquently and their everyday language is embroidered with colorful adjectives and impeccable verb and noun usage. When a reasonable disaster strikes, the government of this small island takes unreasonable action and begins to ban certain letters of the alphabet from the townspeople’s speech and writing. As the books progresses, more and more laws such as these are declared, and the alphabet begins to dwindle to the point where speech is nearly impossible. The book is written in the form of letters between friends, family members, and other people residing on the island of Nollop as they try to resolve these ridiculous mandates and attempt to stay in contact with each other using the sparse letters now available to them.

I can honestly say that this wouldn’t be a book I’d normally pick up in a book store. With that being said, let me also state that I’m so glad I did this challenge purely due to the gems I’ve discovered on this list with Ella Minnow Pea being one of them. Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn. The name itself is amazing in itself as it’s an insight to the fictional town’s love of language. I previously stated that this book was an experience, and I did not lie. I’d like to believe that my vocabulary is fairly advanced due to my love of reading, but it didn’t prepare me for all the quirky words in this book. I found myself reading this with an open dictionary next to me (No shame; everyone should look up words they don’t know) as I encountered unknown phrases. It also amazed me how smooth they seemed to communicate even using words that would normally stand out in my day-to-day conversations. I was honestly floored by the language of the book itself, but the plot was like nothing I’ve ever read before. I could not imagine forcing myself to exclude ONE letter from my vocabulary, yet as the book goes on, more and more are lost. This makes for an interesting read, and I’ll confess that by the end of the book, I had to read each page out loud to make myself understand what was being said. My eyes began deceiving me, so I had to rely on my hearing to guide me, which is something I’ve never encountered while reading a book. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone as it’s a book you’re not likely to forget reading. Thanks, Buzzfeed!


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