Once, in A Town Called Moth

Once, in A Town Called Moth

eBook - 2016
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Anneli has lived in a small Mennonite community in Bolivia her whole life - until now. She and her father have packed their bags, changed their names and fled, and she doesn't know why. She only knows that her father is trying to locate her mother, who disappeared when Anneli was five. Arriving in Toronto, Anneli has to fend for herself in an alien environment, isolated in a big city with no idea how to navigate the unspoken codes that come with being fourteen and in high school. Torn between two worlds, she is troubled by the things she and her father have left behind - a vanished town, a long-ago crime - but determined to find her mother: the one person who might be able to tell her just what it is they're running from.
Publisher: Toronto :, Tundra Books,, 2016.
ISBN: 9781101918135
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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faye_bb Jun 29, 2018

Anneli’s mother left when she was five and now Anneli and her father have come to Toronto to find her.

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Dec 07, 2016

This is a little story about Anneli who has lived in a Mennonite colony in Bolivia all her fourteen years until her father suddenly packs them up and returns to Canada. They change their names and take up residence in Toronto, where her father believes her mother, who ran away from the colony ten years earlier might be living. Why they have fled Bolivia is the central theme of the story.

Personally I found it disappointing the lack of information or research that Trilby Kent did in showing us the life Anneli would have lived in Bolivia as a Mennonite. There was very little given about the Mennonite culture or community which was a big drawer to the book.

The book sometimes feels confusing and chaotic as Anneli's thoughts and observations are as she tries to make sense of her new culture with the mindset of her old culture where God was the centre of her life and every decision made. As she assimilates into life in Canada her faith melts away, which raises the question did she really have a faith of her own or was it simply a cultural statement for her. This question is never even raised, much less explored.

The story is told from current day Toronto with flashbacks from the colony she lived in in Bolivia. We are privy to Anneli's hunt for her missing mother and trying to make sense of her father's choices and behaviour when he continually avoids telling her anything. We see the struggle to make a relationship with the mother and we see the father unable to cope with life in a busy city.

I was hoping for more than it delivered.

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