Wednesday 14 August 2019

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill

Finished August 3
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman

This novel has several storylines surrounding the title character. Nina is in her late twenties, living in a small apartment in the Larchmont area of Los Angeles. She works at a bookstore in the neighbourhood, running a number of programs there including storytimes and a girls' book club. She is a collector of trivial facts and belongs to a competitive trivia team. She has a small circle of close friends, uses her organizer with dedication, and has conversations with her Phil, her cat. Nina suffers from anxiety sometimes and she is about to have a lot of new experiences.
Nina's mother is an journalist who travels widely internationally. Nina has been told that her mother wasn't sure who her father was, and so has never known anything about that side of her family. Once she got to be too big to be carried around on her travels by her mother, she was settled in Los Angeles with a nanny, who she thinks of as a second mother.
As the book opens Nina is approached by a man who says that he is a lawyer for her late father. Her father kept his promise to her mother never to approach her, but she is mentioned in his will, and she has several siblings, nieces and nephews, and other family. This is a shock to Nina, and a bit overwhelming as she gradually meets the various family members. Some of them she quite likes, and others she isn't so sure about.
Nina also sees a man on a trivia team her team matches wits with that intrigues her. Her fellow team members notice and encourage her to make a move. Again, she's not sure.
The bookstore that Nina works in is struggling financially, but her boss and co-worker Liz seems to be handling it, except for the landlord interactions.
As Nina's life absorbs this new information and she considers making changes to her life, she begins to consider her own behaviours and thinks about why she is the way she is.
I really liked this book, especially because I can relate to Nina on several levels. It was a fun read.

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