Friday 27 January 2023

The Bookshop of Secrets

Finished January 22
The Bookshop of Secrets by Mollie Rushmeyer

This novel is set in present day but is influenced by events of the past. Hope Sparrow arrives in the small town of Wanishin Falls, Minnesota looking to collect the books her mother left her when she died. They were held by a friend of her mother's for safekeeping, but Hope has discovered the friend passed away and thus followed the trail to the friend's hometown. The books are part of what Hope has come in search of, but she also remembers childhood stories of treasure and wonders what truth there is to them. 
When she arrives at the bookshop, Dusty Jackets, she finds the owners Ulysses and Margaret Barrick unable to locate her books quickly, partly due to the onset of dementia in one of them, and she agrees to stay and help for a place to stay and some payment while they search. With a timeline of two months set, Hope finds herself getting to know the people of the town, and exploring not only her own past, but also her future. Her dreams of owning a combination food and book truck are shared and begin to become real, but she has to decide whether her life will keep her running as she has or whether she can deal with her past and build a future that includes others. 
There are other young people here also stuck in their own ways, with expectations and baggage from others defining their present. From the bookshop owners' grandson Ronan to cafe manager Kat, to troubled teenager Tate Morgan, they are all finding their place in the world and looking for community. There is an underlying Christian theme to book that doesn't overpower the plot but plays a role in guiding it. 
I enjoyed the story, the book elements and the message of forgiveness and optimism that it held. 

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