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The Bookshop of Yesterdays
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Archive: Other Books > The Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson - 4 stars

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Ellen | 2136 comments Miranda Brooks grew up in California, the adored daughter of two loving parents, and the spoiled niece of her beloved Uncle Billy. Billy, the owner of Prospero Books, delighted in composing scavenger hunts for Miranda, whisking her away to secret adventures and allowing her free reign in his bookshop. On her twelfth birthday, Miranda overhears a heated argument between Billy and her mother. That would be the last time she would ever see Uncle Billy again.

Sixteen years later, Miranda is now living in Pennsylvania, teaching history in a private school and has recently moved in with her boyfriend. Although their chemistry is sparkling, their lifestyles do not mesh well. She is the quiet, reserved type and he is the party boy. A phone call from Miranda's mother informs her that Billy has died. Miranda returns to California for the funeral, stunned that her mother refuses to attend. Her mother has always refused to speak of the argument that divided the siblings for all those years and she still will not tell Miranda what happened. Miranda is shocked when Billy's will is read and she learns that Prospero Books has been left to her. The lawyer also gives her a clue to Billy's final scavenger hunt, one that will lead Miranda into Billy's past, his friends, a tragedy, and a secret.

I must admit that I figured out the secret rather early in the book but that did not take away from the story's appeal. I definitely was not good at figuring out any of Billy's clues; they were all very literary and I don't retain passages of books very well. Miranda is not always the most likable protagonist but she is determined to get at the truth no matter what. As she learns more and more about Billy's past, she does soften somewhat but I don't like the way she constantly treats her mother like a demon who drove away Miranda's favorite person. There are two sides to every story and although her mother was not forthcoming about the falling-out, I think Miranda needed to dial it back a bit. Anyway, I enjoyed the book and it was a fun read.

message 2: by KateNZ (new)

KateNZ | 2321 comments A treasure hunt with literary clues and a bookstore. Count me in!

message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

The word bookstore will get me every time! Great review. Sounds like a good read.

message 4: by Amy (new) - rated it 3 stars

Amy | 8518 comments It’s already on my list too!

message 5: by Jeremiah (new)

Jeremiah Cunningham | 714 comments The premise sounds intriguing, but the book has 1,200 reviews and is fairly poorly rated. That combined with some of your negatives gives me pause about whether I would enjoy this one.

message 6: by Joi (new) - added it

Joi (missjoious) | 3809 comments We're all a bunch of suckers for books about books. Added to the TBR.

Joni | 612 comments I'm trying to finish needs to stop so I can read. :)

message 8: by [deleted user] (new)

Joni wrote: "I'm trying to finish needs to stop so I can read. :)"

I feel you. I live in a mountain town but right now I'm craving that little cabin in the woods with no distractions.

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