Ermintrude

100 Years of Ermintrude: a Life in 33 Stanzas written by Tom Evans and designed by Jacquetta Trueman is the first e-book I’ve read. When I was asked to review it I thought it sounded interesting and different. It is, but I can’t say that I’d like to read many books like this. However, as it is very short it isn’t difficult.

The four-line stanzas are simple to follow – one to a page and each one illustrated. It’s narrative poetry on a small-scale . We get glimpses of the highs and lows of Ermintrude’s life as the years roll back almost to her conception. Each stanza covers a brief memory of different events – some happy and some sad. I did find myself wishing there was more information about each event, but then maybe that’s how it is when you get to be 100. This is a good example of how to compress a life into a few short verses and still retain an interesting story as the milestones in Trudi/Emintrude’s life come back to her as she reached her 100th birthday.

This little book made me pause for thought.

5 thoughts on “Ermintrude”

  1. I’m not certain I could handle an e-book, I like the feel of paper too much. Would it give too much away if I were to ask who or what Ermintrude is? I’m afraid the only thing I associate with that name is a cow.

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  2. Ann, oops – I should have been clearer. Ermintrude is not a cow but I did think she would be too when I first read about this book. She is an old lady at the start of the book looking back over her life. E-books do not attract me like the “real thing” and scrolling down the screen to read 33 pages is a bit of a chore, even though there are only four lines on each page.

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  3. This does sound interesting. I like books that look back over an entire lifetime. However, I’m not sure about the verse part. I’m afraid I would be left with wanting more, as well. Since it’s short, I may pick it up and give it a try anyway. Thanks for the review.

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  4. Did you read this on your computer? I occasionally will read a chapter here or there on Project Gutenberg if I happen to be stuck on a computer with no book handy, but I definitely prefer a paper copy! This sounds like an interesting book, but the format is unusual, isn’t it, with stanzas. I prefer regular prose, but if it’s short it might be fun to try.

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  5. Lisa, that’s it exactly – I was left wanting more.

    Danielle, I did read it on my computer. I much prefer to read a paper copy too, but this was very short. I did have to go back over the verses a few times as I’m not used to reading on screen. It didn’t make me want to read like this again.

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