Advance reader reviews of The Map of True Places

The Map of True Places

by Brunonia Barry

The Map of True Places
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  • Published in USA  May 2010
    416 pages
    Genre: Novels

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There are currently 31 member reviews
for The Map of True Places
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  • Rosemary K. (Saginaw, MI)


    An Exquisite Map
    Brunonia Barry's "The Map of True Places" is a wondrous, magical story combining folk legends, psychotherapy, and American literature. Setting her tale in the same locale as her "The Lace Maker" (and occasionally alluding to characters from that same book), Barry makes the reader long to experience life in that historic Atlantic area.

    The primary characters are Zee (short for Hepzibah, as in "The House of the Seven Gables"), her ailing father and his friend (affectionately known as Melville), and a young woman who commits suicide. Zee's late mother Maureen had always dreamed of experiencing "The Great Love," but this never happened. Zee wonders if she is destined to fulfill her mother's dream.

    I love Brunonia Barry's writing: I read slowly, savoring her words. Except for a few sections where the story seemed to drag, I believe "The Map of True Places" can give the reader an amazing experience.
  • Linda Z. (Corydon, IN)


    The Map of True Places
    When I first started reading this book, I had doubts that I would enjoy it. However, the more I read the more I liked it. There were a lot of unexpected twists and turns in the plot. I had no idea how things were going to progress. The appeal of this book would probably be more to women than men particularly those people facing the problem of caring for aging and sick parents. I can see some lively discussions for book clubs concerning the different characters. I loved the book and am now looking forward to reading The Lace Reader by this author.
  • Marlys D. (Grand Rapids, MI)


    Life Map
    Another winner from Brunonia Barry! I love her quirky characters, including the "character" of Salem, MA. Zee's continuing struggle to find her true place in the world makes for compelling reading.
  • Judith M. (San Diego, CA)


    The Map of True Places
    I have hesitated between a 4 and 5 star rating for this book. I leaned toward 5 stars because as the story progressed I found that I couldn't put it down and read the last half straight through! Yes, it is not great literature, has a somewhat slow beginning, at times confusing plot, and a bit too coincidental. However, any story that keeps you in its spell is worth reading and earning 5 stars. I thought Ms. Barry particularly captured the conflicting emotions of caring for a failing parent. A book group would have many points to spark discussion. Not least of which, should family secrets be told?
  • Kristen H. (Lowell, MA)


    Real life imitation of fairy tales?
    This book captured me from the very first page all the way up until the last especially since quite a bit of the story is set near where I live in Massachusetts. Boston and the other places aren't that far from me so it was great reading about some of the things I have seen firsthand. I think that this book would appeal to anyone from around the Massachusetts area if for no other reason than they might be familiar with the places mentioned. Another group of people who I think may enjoy this book are those that are interested in how people work, what they believe in and how it shapes us as humans and if we can change how we are later in life.
  • Kathleen J. (Mountain View, CA)


    The Map of True Places
    Ms. Berry has the ability to allow a reader to see a character's soul. She artfully weaves together the past, present and future into a strong story. The Map of True Places, provides a window into the life of a Parkinson's patient that allows the reader to both emotionally and intellectually understand the impact of this disease. This book hooks you at the first page and does not let go, even at the last page. Would recommend this to most of my friends. Cannot wait for Ms. Berry’s next book.
  • Sandie F. (Eaton, OH)


    The Map of True Places
    The Map of True Places was an enjoyable read from beginning to end. There were some points where I was a little confused, however, it was all tied together in the end. Just enough suspense and twist to keep you wanting to read more. A very good read.

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