Review: The Bookshop on the Corner

I loved Nina and her van full of books! As she traveled and matched up the right books with the right people, Nina also experienced personal growth. Along her journey from England to Scotland, Nina did more than just drive some kilometers. She transitioned from roommate-situation to living alone, and from depressed to wide-eyed in awe. 

I also liked Nina’s relationship with her roommate Surinder – everyone needs a best friend who can share unvarnished truths. And Surinder was so fun! Nina also had a beautiful friendship with teenage Ainslee, a girl who just needed a good book and a nudge in the right direction. 

I didn’t enjoy the Marek storyline at all, but I did see the necessity of a “transition” guy during Nina’s transformation. So while Marek and his subplot made a lot of sense, the whole thing left a bad taste in my mouth.  The chapters with Nina’s landlord were similarly nose-wrinkling. He was a great guy, but I didn’t like his circumstances in the story. 

Overall, I sailed happily through this lovely story about a woman making a big life change. While the romantic parts weren’t my cup of tea, Nina’s friendships and journey of self-discovery were on point. Author Jenny Colgan made me feel like I was part of Nina’s book van, and that was a thrill in itself! 

-calliope

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Review: The Bookshop on the Corner by Rebecca Raisin

20140714-202708-73628623.jpg Rebecca Raisin infused this book with total cliched cuteness. From the bookshop owner who wanted to read all day to the loud hairdresser in a nearby shop to the roving reporter who falls in love with a small town and considers staying… It’s all been done before. But it hasn’t been done like this: with complete honesty about the fact that the bookshop owner wanted her life to be like the lives of her romance heroines. Sarah wanted the perfect boyfriend, the perfect falling in love story, the happily ever after. So Rebecca Raisin has Sarah openly admit what some of us in real life won’t!

It’s all very meta… The whole time I was thinking YES/EXACTLY, followed by THAT’S SO TRITE, followed by BECAUSE IT’S SO TRUE. I felt like I WAS Sarah because I’m a book lover too. And aren’t we all pretty much reading characters we identify with in one way or another?

So yeah, it’s clichéd. But it’s also literary and layered and symbolic and entertaining and relatable. If you like books, that is. 😉

-Calliope

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