Review of The Bookshop on the Corner


The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan

Publication Date: September 20, 2016

Publisher: William Morrow (an imprint of HarperCollins)

(Sorry to anyone who happened on this post around 7 pm on 8/16/2016; I was trying to schedule and evidently posted it before it was completed.)

There are days when the weather is perfect and you are on holiday and an exquisite book for such a day happens to fall into your hands. That’s how I felt today while I was reading The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan.

Nina is very happy with her life as a librarian. Each day she does the things that she likes best: deal with books and provide others with a book they will love. But the library in Birmingham where she is working is shutting its doors and only two jobs will be available for multiple applicants. For Nina, who is shy to the point of awkwardness, this is obviously not a good thing. She attends a course and determines that she would like to operate a mobile bookstore. She finds a van in Scotland, which she investigates, but the owner isn’t convinced that selling to a tiny woman would be a good thing.

However, with the help of a pub owner and two semi-inhabitants of the pub, Nina is able to buy the van after they purchase it first and then resell it to her.

While driving the van, after realizing that her life might be falling apart because the officials in Birmingham have decided not to award her a license for selling books on the van, she inadvertently stalls on the railroad tracks as a train is bearing down and her life changes irrevocably.

If you thought of all of the tiny things that divert your path one way or another, some good, some bad, you’d never do anything ever again.

And some people don’t. Some people go through life not really deciding to do much, not wanting to, always too fearful of the consequences to try something new.

I have absolutely nothing bad to say about this novel. No qualms whatsoever about recommending it to people who enjoy magical (not supernatural) stories about villages that celebrate the summer solstice with a raucous party that engages everyone; people who enjoy whimsical romance; people who enjoy heroes who are intensely sexual; people who like to see characters change (the way novels are supposed to be written, but frequently aren’t); people who like humor; and people who just want to be swept up in several golden hours of reading a well-written book with insight, a smattering of philosophy, and attractive characters with some wonderfully funny lines interwoven.

The lovely character of Nina, who is a romantic and good soul, may be reason enough to read this book.

For all of us who love to read and find the magic in a well-written novel, who believe that reading can transport and elucidate, this book is for us. Cheers.

I received an ARC from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

rating: butterflybutterflybutterflybutterflybutterfly(5 out of 5 butterflies)


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