The Art of Taxidermy by Sharon Kernot

The Art of Taxidermy


Sharon Kernot

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Published : 2019

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The Art of Taxidermy is a book written in verse, about loss, grief, and a young girl channeling that through the resurrection of the dead, taxidermy.

Charlotte lost her mom at a young age. She lives with her father, Wolfgang, and her Aunt Hilda.

She finds solace in the collection of dead animals, honoring the life they once lived. Aunt Hilda despises her hobby.

Wolfgang brings Charlotte to a museum, where she sees the taxidermy animals, looking alive and ready to pounce, or take flight.

She is awe-struck, and wants to bring life as well to her “treasures.”

This book details Charlotte’s experience through traumatic loss, understanding, and a newfound love for life.

This book destroyed me. I woke up at 5am for some reason, and thought “I’m gonna finish that book.” And then proceeded to cry for 20 minutes.

The book is written in verse, so it was a very quick and easy read. The subject matter, however, made my heart ache.

The character building, the backstories, they’re all so strong. The descriptions of the animals aren’t too much to make somebody squeamish, especially with Charlotte fawning over them.

Yes, death pervades this book. Initially, the story seemed to romanticize death, and then it romanticized life.

It was such an enjoyable, interesting read. I’ve always been a little put off by taxidermy, but I now have a certain respect for it, and it’s appreciation of life and death.

. . .


“That night in bed, in the haze between wakefulness and sleep, I revived them all. Imagined them coming to life with the magic of taxidermy, which didn’t just preserve- but brought them back from the dead.”

“I wanted flesh and blood, not ghosts.”

My rating :

★★★★1/2 (4 1/2 stars)

Thanks for reading!

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Thanks to Netgalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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Have you read this book? Would you? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

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