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The Museum of You

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  1,418 ratings  ·  271 reviews
Clover Quinn was a surprise. She used to imagine she was the good kind, now she’s not sure. She’d like to ask Dad about it, but growing up in the saddest chapter of someone else’s story is difficult. She tries not to skate on the thin ice of his memories.

Darren has done his best. He's studied his daughter like a seismologist on the lookout for waves and surrounded her with
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published June 16th 2016 by Hutchinson
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Jinny Alexander I'm 47 and just read it, and loved it. The main character is 12, and I would absolutely recommend it as a Young Adult book AND as a book adults will e…moreI'm 47 and just read it, and loved it. The main character is 12, and I would absolutely recommend it as a Young Adult book AND as a book adults will enjoy. (less)

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Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,418 ratings  ·  271 reviews

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Helene Jeppesen
Jul 06, 2016 rated it liked it
This is one of those cozy books that deals with family and will put a smile on your face. More specifically, it deals with a family of a father and his daughter; the mother has died several years previously. The story is told from both persons' perspective, and it's fascinating to see how they live in their own worlds while living under the same roof.
The daughter, Clover, has a fascination for museums, and that's what this story is built around. The father is a bus driver who once had a dream t
Canadian Reader
Several years ago I won an advance reading copy of Carys Bray’s first novel, A Song for Issy Bradley and found it an absorbing and moving work. Bray’s second novel is equally affecting and finely observed. The Museum of You tells the story of twelve-year-old Clover Quinn and her loving but emotionally wounded father, Darren, who live in a cluttered house in Merseyside. It is unclear exactly when Clover’s mother, Becky Brookfield, died, but the girl has no memories of her. Clover’s father is unab ...more
Jun 27, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
The Museum of You is a touching tale of grief and an interesting way of dealing with it.

I’m finding it hard to explain why I only gave this book 3 stars, as it is well written, emotional, funny, and Clover is a great character, but for some reason I just didn’t fully connect with it. Perhaps I just wasn’t in the right mood to read it at the time I did.

I’m certain lots of people are going to fall in love this book, so definitely well worth considering if you like the sound of the blurb.

I would li
Renita D'Silva
Apr 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A quiet, beautiful explosion of a book. So evocative, with stunning prose. A book that burrows into your soul. Loved it.
It is not often you find a book that can be genuinely called uplifting. When I say that I mean this is sought of book that just like your favorite pet can make you feel better after having a rubbish day. This book is based on a family and how they exist as individuals in a household. the story follows a young girl called Clover and her father Darren who are both affected by the death of mother and wife Becky in their own ways.

Now 12, Clover for the first time during the summer break is left to h
Jun 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing

2016 has been a very very good year for books. I look back over the past six months and see so many wonderful stories, such a wealth of amazing writing. I'm not sure how on earth I will ever pick out a list of Top Books of 2016.

The Museum of You by Carys Bray is another incredible addition to the treasures of 2016. I was totally bewitched by the writing, the story and the absolutely wonderfully created characters. The story consumed me, the depth astounded me, and best of all, it also made me la
Renee Godding
5/5 stars, all-time favourite

"When you grow up in the saddest chapter of someone else's life, you're forever skating on the thin ice of their memories."

By far my favourite read of this month (and probably the year for that matter) was The Museum of You by Carys Bray: one of those hidden gems of which I had never heard before Jen Campbell mentioned it in one of her videos. Not for the first time, one of her recommendations has become a strong candidate to be one of my all-time favourite novels.
Maya Panika
Mar 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
‘Grief never goes away. And that’s no bad thing – it’s only the other side of love, after all.’

Becky was Clover’s mother; she died when Clover was only a few weeks old. All Clover knows about Becky is what those around her have told her, and that’s precious little. Clover’s father Darren has been the best of parents to the daughter who arrived out of the blue, when no one, not even Becky herself, knew she was pregnant. Clover and her father have an unusually close, loving, trustful relationship,
Jun 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: hardbacks
i wanted to enjoy this book but sadly it just wasn’t my thing.
the writing didn’t work for me with its stilted sentences and descriptions and while i did enjoy the characters there was just nothing gripping, interesting or anything memorable about this book to/for me.

i did like the different family story and it certainly had its real moments and i loved that throughout a summer a 12 year old learns to understand that she should make friends because of who a person is instead of trying to be popu
Karen Mace
Jun 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I received a copy of this via NetGalley in return for a fair and honest review. And I'll now be buying my own copy in hardback! ;)

Wow! Going to be very difficult to put into words the love I currently have for this book! A really simple tale of Clover and her father, Darren, and how they are both dealing in their own separate ways with the loss of Becky, Clovers mother and the sadness and issues that life without her are bringing their way.

The attention to detail is stunning and there are moment
Joanne Robertson
Apr 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I was attracted to this book from the description and that fact that so many people had recommended it after they had read Carys Brays previous book, A Song for Issy Bradley. I haven't read that but after finishing The Museum of You, it will certainly be added to my wishlist as I just adore the way this author writes! She is a natural storyteller and her words flow so beautifully that sometimes I just had to read as slow as I possibly could just to make sure I got every single ounce of pleasure ...more
Sep 09, 2016 rated it liked it
2.5 stars

-It was alright, a bit boring but also kind of cosy and sweet at times.

-Clover/Darren were nice enough but that's about it, they might have been more engrossing if they hand't been so repetitive. I know the story was about their day to day life and all the small things in it, but Clover/Darren doing the same things over and over again got rather tiresome.

-I never thought Clover acted all that much like a 12 year old, all she was interested in was an allotment and making a museum of her
May 15, 2016 marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
DNF at 150 pages

Objectively this was a well written book but for some reason I just couldn't get into it. Perhaps it was the lack of a clear plot. Perhaps it was the writing style. I really am not 100% clear. What I do know is every time I picked this up it felt like a chore so I decided to leave it down for a little while and haven't picked it up for nearly 2 weeks and have no desire whatsoever to do so. It's a tough decision to DNF this as if I pushed through it might pick up but sometimes you
Jun 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
Clover lives with her father and the distant remnants of her mother mainly left in the main bedroom, door closed. After a trip to the Mersey Maritime Museum she decides to curate a museum to her mum. In doing so, alternating between Clover and her father, we discover the story of where she went and what makes a family. A beautiful heartwarming, and breaking, tale.
Eric Anderson
Jun 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
It’s easy to be drawn into the lives of the characters in Carys Bray’s novel “The Museum of You”. Twelve-year-old Clover is filled with joy as it’s the beginning of the summer holidays so she has time to work in an allotment garden. She lives in North West England with her single father Darren who is a bus driver and next door to Mrs Mackerel, a comical older woman who is a bit deaf: “She has two settings: loud, for normal words, and extra loud, for the words she wants to be certain have been he ...more
Claire Huston
Jun 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Not quite everything I’d hoped. 3.5/5 stars.

This review was originally posted on my book blog.

I’m saddened that I didn’t enjoy this book more. The writing is good: clear and evocative. The idea of the “museum of you” is great and had a lot of potential. I liked Clover – the 12-year old protagonist – very much. The story is told in alternating third-person point-of-view between Clover and her Dad, Ben, and I looked forward to every one of Clover’s sections.

However, I didn’t really connected with
Cleopatra  Pullen
What a delightful read with a vein of honesty running through Clover Quinn and her father, Darren’s story.

Clover has just completed her first year at secondary school and Darren has conceded that she no longer needs to spend her days with their elderly neighbour Mrs Mackerel and so with the long summer holiday stretching before her Clover decides on a project. Inspired by a trip to Liverpool’s Maritime Museum and having a conversation with one of the curators, she is going to sort through all he
Jul 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
What a gorgeous book! The cover is stunning and the story within has melted my heart.
Clover Quinn knows she was a surprise, but she's always liked to think she was a good one. She's twelve now and isn't so sure any more. Clover and her Dad (Darren) are close. He has done his best, raising her as a single Dad. They lead a simple, day-to-day life. I particularly loved the scenes where they are watching Bake Off together! Clover just wishes he would talk about her mother more.
Clover is roughly awa
Jun 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
From reading the blurb for this book I wasn't quite sure whether or not it would it would be something that I'd really enjoy. A number of years ago it probably would have been but my reading preferences have changed a lot in recent years. However, after reading just a few sentences, I knew that at the very least I was going to like The Museum of You. The writing was beautiful. It's very descriptive and the words look lovely on the page and sound wonderful in my head when I read them. It might be ...more
Apr 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2016
Review originally posted on my blog:

I’m a huge fan of Carys Bray – I adored her first novel A Song of Issy Bradley so was beyond excited when Carys offered me the chance to read and review The Museum of You.

The Museum of You is a quiet novel but it is so beautifully moving. It’s told in alternating chapters between Clover and her dad, Darren, and then between the chapter breaks there is a page about an item that Clover is planning to show in her museum. These pag
Feb 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having enjoyed Carys Bray’s short stories and her first novel, A Song for Issy Bradley, I was excited to read this, her second novel. And she very quickly had me wrapped up in the lives of Clover and her dad, Darren. Both Clover and Darren miss Clover’s mother who died when Clover was still a baby. It’s such a painful memory for Darren that Clover doesn’t know how to ask her Dad about the one person she’d love to know more about in order to understand herself better. She can’t know herself when ...more
Sid Nuncius
Mar 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I thought this was an excellent book. I wasn't sure what to expect, but it turned out to be very well written, engaging and with some important things to say.

The Museum Of You is a novel of character, told in the third person from the point of view of two characters: Clover Quinn, a twelve-year-old girl who lives with her father Darren in a small town outside Liverpool, and Darren himself, an ordinary, flawed but thoroughly decent man who is a bus driver and tries his very best to bring Clover u
Ellie M
Jun 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Netgalley and publisher for this review copy.

As soon as I saw this book advertised I wanted to read it. I really enjoyed her previous novel A Song for Issy Bradley because of the storyline and local setting. I think I liked this novel even more.

At the heart of this book is a daughter and her father, both trying to deal with the death of their mother and wife. The daughter, Clover, is sensitive like her Father, and at age 12 wants to understand more about the death of her mother, Bec
Chantal Lyons
Feb 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I approached this book with trepidation. I loved "A Song For Issy Bradley", but I knew the author drew on her Mormon background to write it, so I was worried that she wouldn't be able to spin the same magic again with a completely different story. I needn't have feared.

Bray's writing is, quite simply, simply beautiful. Plain and rich at the same time, never pretentious or slow when it lingers over tiny details. She strings words together in the most inventive, brilliant ways ("Colin, who approac
Colette Lamberth
Apr 15, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This started a bit slow and with so much detailed description that I wasn't sure I would like it. As it progressed I was drawn in by the characters and I grew to love it. The central character of Clover, with love hidden in her name, will surely touch the hearts of all readers. The characters really came alive in the pages and I thought the mixed up common sayings by the neighbour Mrs Mackerel added a needed touch of humour. I thought the idea of Clover setting up the museum as a way to find out ...more
Oct 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
Quite a sweet story about dealing with grief and families but it just didn't move quick enough at the start and I took a couple of weeks off to read other books. I did like the characters and ultimately that made me finish it but it felt a bit young adult and was fairly predictable. Imagine this will be pretty popular as an easy bookshop chart type read. ...more
Tara Russell
Apr 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It's 12 year old Clover's first unsupervised summer while her bus driver dad is out at work. Alone in the house, inspired by a meeting with a curator at a museum, she investigates the contents of the spare bedroom. The bedroom contains a treasure trove of items, many of them belonging to Clover's mother. Due to the constant grief that Darren, Clover's dad, feels, the two of them don't talk much about Becky...Clover decides to create a museum in the room and the story of her history gradually beg ...more
Mar 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sweet cosy read. Good distraction from the current climate.
Elite Group
Jun 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A touching story about a young girl trying to capture her dead mother’s essence.

Clover is 12 years old and at the age where she is just beginning to become a young adult. She has been brought up by her father, Darren, since she was 6 weeks old as her mother, Becky, died in a tragic accident. Darren is a bus driver on the route from Southport to Liverpool and had to give up his dreams of a Geography degree to look after Clover. However, he has always encouraged her interest in museums and she has
Jun 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: july-2016
The Museum of You is a warmly and sensitively told story of a father and daughter negotiating their way through grief. It is a book in which not a lot happens, however, a lot does happen through it’s beauty and it’s capacity to make you feel deeply. I don’t want you to take me wrong and think that this book is dull, it is anything but, and I could not put it down.

‘When you grow up in the saddest chapter of someone else’s story, you’re forever skating on the thin ice of their memories.’

Darren’s p
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