The Bookshop of Yesterdays
A woman inherits a beloved bookstore and sets forth on a journey of self-discovery in this poignant debut about family, forgiveness and a love of reading.
Miranda Brooks grew up in the stacks of her eccentric Uncle Billy's bookstore, solving the inventive scavenger hunts he created just for her. But on Miranda's twelfth birthday, Billy has a mysterious falling-out with her mother and suddenly disappears from Miranda's life. She doesn't hear from him again until sixteen years later when she receives unexpected news: Billy has died and left her Prospero Books, which is teetering on bankruptcy--and one final scavenger hunt.
When Miranda returns home to Los Angeles and to Prospero Books--now as its owner--she finds clues that Billy has hidden for her inside novels on the store's shelves, in locked drawers of his apartment upstairs, in the name of the store itself. Miranda becomes determined to save Prospero Books and to solve Billy's last scavenger hunt. She soon finds herself drawn into a journey where she meets people from Billy's past, people whose stories reveal a history that Miranda's mother has kept hidden--and the terrible secret that tore her family apart.
Bighearted and trenchantly observant, The Bookshop of Yesterdaysis a lyrical story of family, love and the healing power of community. It's a love letter to reading and bookstores, and a testament to how our histories shape who we become.
Hardcover, 368 pages
Expected publication: June 12th 2018 by Park Row
“At the beginning, it seems like a play about vengeance but it’s really about forgiveness.”
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Fear of Flying
The Grapes of Wrath
Bridge to Terabithia
“Whatever clue it held, wherever Billy wanted to lead me I didn’t want to follow anymore”-Amy Meyerson
As a young child, Miranda loved her uncle Billy. He always had the neatest ideas to keep her busy. Because Miranda was a clever girl, Billy often made up riddles for her to solve. Not the really easy kinds, but he often took her to his bookstore, introduced her to wonderful children’s books and made her think in literature.
“He’d bought me The Giving Tree perhaps to teach me about friendship or to assure me that whatever happened at school, he would be my giving tree”-Amy Meyerson
One evening after bedtime, Miranda wakes to her parents and Uncle Billy having an argument. This was definitely something serious. It turns out, it changes everything in her life and her mother is silent about the whole thing. After seeing her uncle only one more time after, he disappears from her life.
“Understanding prepares us for the future”-Amy Meyerson
…reads the card in the package Miranda receives 16years later without a return address. Now an adult, history teacher and in a relationship, she finds out her uncle Billy has passed away and left “Prospero Books" in LA in her hands….along with some clues to solve the riddle of his past and that fateful night, that changed their lives.
“Like Prospero, Billy wanted to tell me of his betrayal, the event that had exiled him from our family”-Amy Meyerson
This mystery kept me guessing and guessing. While the plot split between the family dynamics and Miranda’s thoughts, Billy’s mystery was a gradual slow burn that would not let up. This very creatively crafted riddle, slowly unfolded, while playing out Miranda’s relationship with her mother, boyfriend and all those she ends up meeting along the way from Billy’s past and "Prospero Books".
I very much enjoyed this touching book. It resolves into an unforeseen ending of love and forgiveness, as all the family members come clean and a big secret is revealed. The nostalgia of the bookstore was lovely and the title of the novel befitting perfectly as it makes all sense at the end. A lovely, touching novel.
I received a digital copy of ‘The Bookshop of Yesterdays’ from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. Thank you!