Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Review by: Autumn
The Storied Life of AJ Fikry is a librarian and bibliophile's
dream - full of references to famous literature, authors, and the
ongoing debate that all book lover's have an opinion about: the ereader.
This story centers around a small book shop on Alice Island, MA and its
cranky owner, AJ Fikry. The story begins with AJ as a recent widower,
drowning his misery due to the loss of his wife each evening with
bottles of red wine, frozen dinners, and his priceless copy of Poe's The
Tamerlane. His life is completely changed, however, when a toddler is
abandoned one evening in his shop and he makes the decision to take her
in and adopt her as his own. Without giving away any more of the story
(trust me, there is more), the reader will be delighted to watch AJ's
transition into a loveable grump, and will be quickly taken with Island
Books and the meaning it holds for the people of Alice.
As is evident from my description above, I don't have anything
particularly negative to say about this book. I read it within three
days and enjoyed it as a story that moved along at a nice pace. Though
the ending was not completely predictable, it was still well within the
safe confines of the story. Zevin writes mainly YA novels, and I think
that this novel had many qualities of something that would be more
suitable to that genre, and would certainly appeal to many teenagers.
The Storied Life of AJ Fikry is a safe, heartwarming, summer read. It's
certainly not the next great American novel, but it does have a spark
that would appeal to most readers.