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Publisher: 18th June 2015 by Random House UK, Vintage Publishing, Chatto & Windus
Pages: 384 pages
How I Read It: ARC ebook
Genre: womens fiction, books about book, contemporary, romance
My Rating: 4 crowns
This is a book about books. All sorts of books, from Little Women and Harry Potter to Jodi Picoult and Jane Austen, from to Stieg Larsson to Joyce Carol Oates to Proust. It’s about the joy and pleasure of books, about learning from and escaping into them, and possibly even hiding behind them. It’s about whether or not books are better than real life.
It’s also a book about a Swedish girl called Sara, her elderly American penfriend Amy and what happens when you land a very different kind of bookshop in the middle of a town so broken it’s almost beyond repair.
Or is it?
This is such a fabulous book. Strangely though, nothing much happens, no great plot twist, no major drama - it just gently draws you in, as it ambles along until you find yourself so engaged with each and every character, you can't put it down. What clever writing. Joy to be found in the simple things.
"For her, it was an evening when she had joked and laughed, been relaxed with a man, an evening where she had somehow .... lived. Just lived".
Yes, it is a book about books - so all you bibliophiles out there take note! M.U.S.T read! It contains such a love of books, stories and all literature that it will make your heart skip a beat. And yes! There is even a section on the wonderful smell of books!
"Can you smell it? The scent of new book. Unread adventures. Friends you haven't met yet, hours of magical escapism awaiting you".
However, there is so much more to this tale than just a love of great reads. Full of whimsical charm, humour and a great cast of characters that bring small town America to life. It's a delight to read and you can just see it would make a great film as the story plays out in your reading mind. Sara, who could curl up with a good book for hours, brings that passion to an eclectic but loveable group of people.
"There was something sad about the town, as though generations of problems and disappointments had rubbed off onto its bricks and roads".
The tale of Broken Wheel and it's inhabitants - each of them facing their own fears and disappointments, hopes and dreams - is like a balm to the soul .This is a story of many and we travel along with Sara and the evolving friendships that ensue. There is a little bit of everything and not too much of anything. It's complex yet simple, quirky yet loveable, funny and heartwarming.
"She had kept well behind the safety barrier her entire life, but now she was standing there, at the edge of the precipice for the very first time, fumbling blindly at the realisation that there were other ways to live, at how intense and rich life could be".