Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine 
that spotlights upcoming releases we can't wait to read

This week I can't wait for: 

by Gabrielle Zevin 
Published: April 2014 by Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill 

In the spirit of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, Gabrielle Zevin's enchanting novel is a love letter to the world of books-and booksellers-that changes our lives by giving us the stories that open our hearts and enlighten our minds. 

On the faded Island Books sign hanging over the porch of the Victorian cottage is the motto "No Man Is an Island; Every Book Is a World." A. J. Fikry, the irascible owner, is about to discover just what that truly means.

A. J. Fikry's life is not at all what he expected it to be. His wife has died, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. Slowly but surely, he is isolating himself from all the people of Alice Island-from Lambiase, the well-intentioned police officer who's always felt kindly toward Fikry; from Ismay, his sister-in-law who is hell-bent on saving him from his dreary self; from Amelia, the lovely and idealistic (if eccentric) Knightley Press sales rep who keeps on taking the ferry over to Alice Island, refusing to be deterred by A.J.'s bad attitude. Even the books in his store have stopped holding pleasure for him. These days, A.J. can only see them as a sign of a world that is changing too rapidly.

And then a mysterious package appears at the bookstore. It's a small package, but large in weight. It's that unexpected arrival that gives A. J. Fikry the opportunity to make his life over, the ability to see everything anew. It doesn't take long for the locals to notice the change overcoming A.J.; or for that determined sales rep, Amelia, to see her curmudgeonly client in a new light; or for the wisdom of all those books to become again the lifeblood of A.J.'s world; or for everything to twist again into a version of his life that he didn't see coming. As surprising as it is moving, The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry is an unforgettable tale of transformation and second chances, an irresistible affirmation of why we read, and why we love.


Why do I want to read this book? 

First thanks to Jen @ YA Romantics for leading me to this book at ALA. Second, I've been on a nostalgic adult fiction reading kick recently, and this one sounds particularly delightful. This guy lives on an island and owns a bookstore. Anything that celebrates a love of reading sounds like a win to me, as does a story populated with all these quirky characters. I will hopefully be reading this story soon!

What are you waiting on this week? 


  1. This one sounds good. I've never read this author, but our book club is scheduled to read one of hers later this year. Hope you enjoy the book!
    Here's my pick.
    All The Light We Cannot See

  2. Interesting - I love books where characters go through life changes. Thanks for sharing!

    My WoW

  3. This does sound like a fun, quirky story, I can't wait to read your thoughts on it Lauren! I actually really like that cover as well, I'm a sucker for all-type (or mostly all type) designs:)

  4. Oh, this novel has all the makings to be an endearing read. I do hope you fall in love with it, Lauren. I'm already looking forward to your thorough review, lady! :)

    Marlene @ The Flyleaf Review

  5. This one sounds like a very sweet and heartwarming read! ...I just noticed, is that a little baby in the basket on the cover? haha. Will definitely keep my eyes out for this. Thanks for sharing!

    Here's my WOW at Bookmunchies (:

  6. Bookstore. Island. Sales rep. I'm in. Thanks for sharing!

    My WoW

  7. Whoa! Way to go Jen! This book looks amazing! I loved the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society--but what I think is really cool is this is written by Gabrielle Zevin? Elsewhere and the Birthright Trilogy- Gabrielle Zevin?? That's quite a departure for her and I am SO INTRIGUED. TY for putting this on my radar, it sounds wonderful!

  8. Great pick! This one caught my eye a couple of weeks ago and went straight on to my wishlist! I cannot resist a book about books and bookstores :)

  9. I have this on my nightstand and can't wait to start it!
    And it was really fun tracking down books with you. Anytime!!
    Jen @ YA Romantics

  10. It definitely sounds delightful (I love that word). A bookseller on an island? For that alone, I'd pick it up!

  11. I don't think this book would've crossed my radar but for your Wow, Lauren. It sounds amazing! You really found some gems at the ALA! Did I tell you I'm going to the one in June? I can't wait. :)

  12. Pretty cover :D Sounds like an interesting book. I really hope you will end up loving it when you read it. <3 Great pick :)


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