When the grumpy owner of a bookshop finds himself looking after a two year old, he finds his life utterly altered. After mourning the loss of his wife and avoiding the world outside of his bookshop, A.J is suddenly thrown back into real life.
Not only is this a book about a bookshop, this novel includes passages from books that cleverly fit with the plot. It is a book filled with literary references and written in beautiful, at times lyrical language. It questions what it means to be human and looks at love and friendship outside of the norm. It is a beautiful, sometimes heartbreaking novel -be warned you need tissues for the final few chapters.
A.J spends the novel both looking back at his own life and looking forward to Maya’s future, questioning how his present day interactions will effect her and what the world will be like when she grows up. Zevin is extremely clever in her structuring of the novel and her use of literary references to embroider this very real human story.
I loved this book and I know it will stay with me for a long time to come.