Combining the zest of Where’d You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple and the charm of The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry does not disappoint. Fikry is a curmudgeonly book seller who is not really dealing with the death of his wife and is far more comfortable with his stacks of books than people. Fussy he is about those books too! No vampires or maudlin memoirs in his book store. Amelia Loman is Firky’s new sales rep for Knightly Press. Let’s just say their first meeting does not go well, bringing out the worst in Fikry’s prickly character. Under that crusty exterior, Fikry’s heart beats true, full of passion for well written words. A rare book will be stolen from Fikry and something surprising left in his store, those two events will change everything. At the beginning of each chapter is a book review by the irascible bookseller. If you love books, enjoy reading, and like your story spiced with just the right amount of humor, do not miss this incredible book. I did not stop turning pages until the story ended, and then I was sad because I would have enjoyed reading even more about these delightful characters.— Deon Stonehouse
This is one of those stories that grabs you right from the beginning. You immediately connect with the characters, they are real. It is the story of a bookseller whose store off the coast of Massachusetts is failing. It is failing because he is grieving over the death of his beloved wife. He is cranky and drinks too much, and he loves his books more than his customers. However, the reader soon realizes there is much more going on. There is an unconventional relationship with his lovely young publishing rep and a surprising new friendship with a local cop. The author also weaves in a couple of mysteries and surprises which force the bookseller into joining the human race again. It is an uncomplicated story of love, loss and the gifts of human kinship.— Lynn Hornbuckle
A New York Times Bestseller, a #1 Indie Next Pick, and a #1 LibraryReads Selection This novel has humor, romance, a touch of suspense, but most of all love--love of books and bookish people and, really, all of humanity in its imperfect glory. Eowyn Ivey, author of The Snow ChildA. J. Fikry, the irascible owner of Island Books, has recently endured some tough years: his wife has died, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and his prized possession--a rare edition of Poe poems--has been stolen. Over time, he has given up on people, and even the books in his store, instead of offering solace, are yet another reminder of a world that is changing too rapidly. Until a most unexpected occurrence gives him the chance to make his life over and see things anew. Gabrielle Zevin's enchanting novel is a love letter to the world of books--an irresistible affirmation of why we read, and why we love. Readers who delighted in Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows's The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Rachel Joyce's The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, and Jessica Brockmole's Letters from Skye will be equally captivated by this adult novel by a popular YA author about a life of books, redemption, and second chances. Funny, tender, and moving. Library Journal, starred review Wade into summer reading with this sweet yet soulful tale of love, loss, the power of friendship--and books. Like sunshine on a breezy spring day, you won t want it to end. Family Circle Zevin perfectly captures the joy of connecting people and books . . . Filled with interesting characters, a deep knowledge of bookselling, wonderful critiques of classic titles, and very funny depictions of book clubs and author events, this will prove irresistible to book lovers everywhere. Booklist Zevin is a deft writer, clever and witty. Publishers Weekly A wonderful, moving, endearing story of redemption and transformation that will sing in your heart for a very, very long time. Garth Stein, author of The Art of Racing in the Rain.