A Novel Bookstore

A Novel Bookstore

Book - 2010
Average Rating:
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A devotee of Stendhal who has shunned the company of his fellow human beings to live on the outskirts of a tiny village in Savoy is kidnapped and left for dead along a forest road. A middle-aged mother who spends much of her time shuttling her numerous offspring along twisting mountain roads loses control of her car and ends up injured but alive in a gorge. Meanwhile, an elderly man of unbreakable habits is taunted and threatened by two unknown men while on his morning walk along the cliffs of Brittany. Mystery abounds but A Novel Bookstore is no everyday mystery. The victims here are not members of the underworld, toughs or thugs, but mild, meek and apparently ordinary people. In the eyes of their aggressors, they are guilty of only one crime: expressing their tastes in literature.

Indeed, all three victims are members of The Good Novel's secret selection committee. Tucked away in a corner of Paris, The Good Novel bookstore offers its clientele literary masterpieces, both contemporary and classic, selected by a top-secret committee of authors. The store has proven an instant success, but nobody could have imagined that success would unleash a tide of hatred. Now, there are those who will stop at nothing to destroy The Good Novel. One by one, the pieces of this puzzle fall ominously into place, as it becomes clear to the store's owners, Ivan and Francesca, that their dreams of an ideal place for books may be shattered by envy and violence.

Elegantly mixing the mystery and literary fiction genres, Laurence Coss#65533; has written an enthralling fable for lovers of good books and a heartfelt tribute to fine bookselling.
Publisher: New York : Europa Editions, c2010.
ISBN: 9781933372822
Characteristics: 416 p. ; 21 cm.
Additional Contributors: Anderson, Alison

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Heidikmac
Jul 23, 2012

One of the most entrancing novels I've read in a long time. I've loved every one of the translations from Alison Anderson and this novel is no exception. After reading it here, I can't wait to buy my own copy.

The book is not particularly exciting, but the language is lovely and if the idea of having a bookstore full of only good novels makes you a little giddy, this is definitely the book for you.

g
gmaclear
Aug 15, 2011

This is one of those annoying books that can make you forget to make dinner, or make you stay up past your bed time so that the next day you're cranky...
A great read! A comment on literature and big box bookstores and life. Since it was translated from French it is also a window into life in France today.

w
wegge
Jul 22, 2011

I loved the book. It gave me ideas for further reading and refreshed memories of my time in Europe and some of the differences between my life there and here. I was also interested in the workings of the publishing industry.

m
macierules
Dec 26, 2010

This novel has been getting good reviews...

I certainly support the movement promoting good novels, but the concept of this book is odd to me - haven't specialty and independent book stores been around for ever...and let's not forget the public library pushing good books since the beginning of time. Why would anyone feel they have a right to complain about what someone chooses to sell? There is a lovely mystery bookstore in Kingston, and as far as I know Margaret Atwood fans haven't pushed the owner off a cliff yet. Passionate discussions about good books are everywhere; a retail store is one of the last places I need to source titles.

Loved the cover art, but the book as a whole was not enjoyable.

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