My Favourite Books About Books

IMG_2029“The words you can’t find, you borrow.
We read to know we’re not alone.  We read because we are alone.  We read and we are not alone.” – Gabrielle Zevin, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

My recent read of The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman, a book about a secret Library society, spies, and of course books, made me think back to some of my favourite books that have books as one of the main themes.  It is always wonderful to read something that captures the love of reading so many of us share and the beauty of a story.  These are my favourite books about books:

1. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Young Daniel becomes fascinated by a book called The Shadow of the Wind by Julián Carax.  When he sets out to find other works by tis mysterious author, he discovers that someone is destroying every book Carax had ever written.  Beautifully written and engaging story with an intriguing mystery.

2. Mr. Peneumbra’s 24-hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
Young protagonist Clay Jannon stumbles upon a pattern in customer book selection, and sets out to uncover the mystery of Mr. Penumbra’s bookstore with the help of his friends.  A fun adventure that examines the relationship between new technology and old school books.

3. The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
Independent bookstore owner A.J. Fikry is grieving the loss of his wife and has isolated himself from just about everyone.  When he discovers an unexpected package left at his bookstore, his life takes a turn in a whole new direction.  A beautifully written and touching story. Continue reading “My Favourite Books About Books”

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

BLOG“Sometimes books don’t find us until the right time.”

In The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, independent bookstore owner A.J. Fikry is grieving the loss of his wife and has isolated himself from most people in his small island town.  The sales at his store are on the decline, a rare book has been stolen, and he is at a low point in his life.  One night, he finds a package that has been left on the floor of his bookstore, which changes his life forever.

With The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, Gabrielle Zevin has created a beautifully written and touching story.  It’s a story of happiness, humour, sadness, grief, hope, love and the beauty of new beginnings.  It is also about the love of books and the role bookstores play in a community.  Each chapter starts with a book selection and review by A.J. and gives the reader a nice introduction to the section ahead.  By the end of the book I had a good list of titles to research and add to my reading list.  The characters are endearing, wonderfully likeable and their wit and charisma are a source of many great quotes.  Quite simply, it’s a charming novel that will touch your heart.

Favourite quote:  “Why is any one book different from any other book?  They are different, A.J. decides, because they are.  We have to look inside many.  We have to believe.  We agree to be disappointed sometimes so that we can be exhilarated every now and again.”