I’m a reader. A regular ol’ bookworm. My taste in books varies like New England weather. One week I’m enthralled by a great classic and the next week I’m devouring some “woman in peril” pot boiler I picked up at the airport. Sometimes I even get galleys to review here on the blog, which is so fun. Not to mention free.
As a voracious reader I’ve noticed that books a lot of the population calls wonderful or delightful, I tend to find them dull and poorly written. No, I’m not going to name titles or authors, no need to be Nanny Negative but suffice to say that my taste is not to the popular.
Then along came this little book, The Storied Life of AJ Fikry. This book was mentioned everywhere as such a good read that naturally, I figured I would hate it. Then, right before a cross country flight I was searching “Goodreads” (are you on there? if not you should be) for an interesting title and this little book popped up.
The reason I trust Goodreads over other lists is because the forum is populated entirely of voracious readers like myself. So, I bought the book and started reading it from Boston to San Diego.
It’s enchanting. Although I won’t say that it grabbed me from page one, definitely by chapter 2 I was hooked. Now if you don’t like to know plots ahead of time, stop here.
The main character, AJ Fikry is a widowed book shop owner on an island off of Massachusetts. A setting naturally dear to my heart. A publisher’s representative enters his life, a lost baby and a wonderfully average gentleman who becomes both hero and book lover by book’s end. Scattered though out are literary references that as a bibliophile I found delightful. There’s even a CS Lewis reference that I didn’t get so if anyone knows what I’m talking about, please share.
If you are a constant reader (as Stephen King refers to us in his writing) then I suspect you will enjoy this novel. I liked it so much that I saved the second half for the flight home. ( I didn’t want it to end). The book is not suspenseful, mysterious, overtly romantic of a difficult read. It is quite simply what is sometimes categorized as a delightful yarn.
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