I have read a few disappointing thrillers lately. You know how it goes, I get sucked into an intriguing idea, but then after reading the first few chapters it all either unravels into something ridiculous or you can see the ‘twist’ coming a mile off.
I often buy thrillers after a long day at work, waiting for the train in WHSmith’s. They are often cheaper than magazines, and whilst I cannot usually justify spending £4.99 on Country Living, I can always justify spending money on a book.
There’s a large display of new releases on the back wall of this particular WHS and the majority of these books are of the crime genre. However on one occasion I spotted The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend and read the blurb on the back.
Sara is 28 and has never been outside Sweden – except in the (many) books she reads. When her elderly pen friend Amy invites her to come and visit her in Broken Wheel, Iowa, Sara decides it’s time. But when she arrives, there’s a twist waiting for her – Amy has died. Finding herself utterly alone in a dead woman’s house in the middle of nowhere was not the holiday Sara had in mind.
But Sara discovers she is not exactly alone. For here in this town so broken it’s almost beyond repair are all the people she’s come to know through Amy’s letters: poor George, fierce Grace, buttoned-up Caroline and Amy’s guarded nephew Tom.
Sara quickly realises that Broken Wheel is in desperate need of some adventure, a dose of self-help and perhaps a little romance, too. In short, this is a town in need of a bookshop.
Now if there’s any subject matter that’s going to lure me into buying a book, it’s got to be a book about books, mixed up with something a bit Scandinavian and set in small town America. Almost written with me in mind, don’t you think?
I absolutely loved this book, the characters are wonderful and quirkily captured. It’s funny and warm and gave me the same feeling as I get when I am tucked up in bed with a pile of books and a hot chocolate by my side. Sara, the protagonist, is witty and sharp and exasperating in equal measures. And the narrative positively glows with the love of books, beautifully describing the feel and the smell of them and brimming over with literary references. It is definitely a book lovers book.