Look for Amy Meyerson’s new novel The Imperfects, a captivating literary page-turner.
THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER
Best Books of Summer 2018 Selection by Philadelphia Inquirer and Library Journal
“Part mystery and part drama, Meyerson uses a complex family dynamic in The Bookshop of Yesterdays to spotlight the importance of truth and our need for forgiveness.” —Associated Press
A woman inherits a beloved bookstore and sets forth on a journey of self-discovery in this poignant debut about family, forgiveness and a love of reading.
Miranda Brooks grew up in the stacks of her eccentric Uncle Billy’s bookstore, solving the inventive scavenger hunts he created just for her. But on Miranda’s twelfth birthday, Billy has a mysterious falling-out with her mother and suddenly disappears from Miranda’s life. She doesn’t hear from him again until sixteen years later when she receives unexpected news: Billy has died and left her Prospero Books, which is teetering on bankruptcy—and one final scavenger hunt.
When Miranda returns home to Los Angeles and to Prospero Books—now as its owner—she finds clues that Billy has hidden for her inside novels on the store’s shelves, in locked drawers of his apartment upstairs, in the name of the store itself. Miranda becomes determined to save Prospero Books and to solve Billy’s last scavenger hunt. She soon finds herself drawn into a journey where she meets people from Billy’s past, people whose stories reveal a history that Miranda’s mother has kept hidden—and the terrible secret that tore her family apart.
Bighearted and trenchantly observant, The Bookshop of Yesterdays is a lyrical story of family, love and the healing power of community. It’s a love letter to reading and bookstores, and a testament to how our histories shape who we become.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
We love a good scavenger hunt. So does Miranda Brooks, whose Uncle Billy used to set up elaborate games for her—until he disappeared on the night of Miranda’s 12th birthday. Sixteen years after Billy vanished from her life, Miranda receives a package announcing that she’s inherited Prospero Books, Billy’s charming shop in L.A.’s hip Silver Lake neighborhood. It appears Billy has set up one last scavenger hunt for her, which will finally explain what happened all those years ago. What follows is a heartfelt journey through Billy’s life and the unveiling of family secrets. We loved trying to follow the treasure hunt clues—all drawn from books ranging from Jane Eyre to Bridge to Terabithia—alongside Miranda. The Bookshop of Yesterdays is a warm story of love, loss, and forgiveness, and a charming puzzle box of a mystery.
In her heartfelt debut, Meyerson brings readers on a scavenger hunt full of literary clues and family secrets. Miranda Brooks feels her life is finally coming together she adores teaching middle school history in Philadelphia and has decided to settle there, taking the big step of moving in with her boyfriend, a fellow teacher. But Miranda's cozy life is thrown into tumult when she receives a mysterious package after the sudden death of her estranged uncle Billy, who she hasn't spoken to since a falling-out between him and her mother years before. Once a huge part of her life, Billy used to invite Miranda to his Los Angeles bookshop, Prospero Books, where they would read and solve riddles he thought up. But, on Miranda's 12th birthday, her mother and Billy had a mysterious fight, and Miranda hasn't heard from him since. After his death, Miranda travels to L.A., where she learns that Billy has left her Prospero Books along with a literary clue to one final adventure he wanted to share with her. She works with the devoted staff to revive the old store, all the while following Billy's clues, which lead her to hidden family secrets. Filled with quotes from and allusions to The Tempest, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and Jane Eyre, Meyerson's evocative novel is a fun homage to book lovers and the eclectic spirit of L.A., This review has been corrected; a previous version referenced The Wizard of Oz and stated that Miranda worked in a high school.
Although not a thrilling read it was sure enjoyable. I would recommend it if you like a mystery and a story of imperfect family.
About forgiveness and where it may be found
It seems for some reason I have been binging on books about bookstores. I found the recommendation for this one in a wonderful La Jollla bookstore - Waterstons. The bookstore of yesterdays is nothing like Waterstons. It references Shakespeare’s The Tempest. That play is also about forgiveness. It is said that there are only really a few plots - perhaps this illustrates that. The story is also about relationships - relationships that break and relationships that develop. It is about the protagonists journey to discover where she fits into her family. The uncle she seems to loose and then rediscovers after his death. He sends her on quests - in the end the quest is to find herself and her place in the world.
The Bookshop of Yesterdays
Genuine characters. An original storyline. No unnecessary twaddle. Intelligent dialogue. What’s not to like?