The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, Gabrielle Zevin 2014
This is just about the perfect summer novel. A quick read without literary pretensions that is clever, laugh out loud in parts, and tear-jerking in others, vivid characters, a clever plot, and a setting on one of my favorite places in the world, Nantucket, or as it is called in this book, Alice Island. Having visited Nantucket more than 25 times and spent hours in the two bookstores there, the book’s setting and action felt realistic and welcoming. In addition, the author introduces each chapter with a recommended short story (from Raymond Carver to F. Scott Fitzgerald, from Flannery O’Connor to Roald Dahl) which the bookstore owner is suggesting to his daughter. Any description of the plot would require a spoiler alert, but I guarantee that you’ll enjoy the day or two you spend reading this book on the beach, the mountain, or somewhere in between.