Contemporary Fiction Book Review: The Printed Letter Bookshop
About the Book
Book: The Printed Letter Bookshop
Author: Katherine Reay
Genre: Women’s fiction, romance
Release Date: May 14, 2019
Publisher's Description"Amid literature and lattes, three women come together and find that sharing one’s journey with best friends makes life richer.
When attorney Madeline Carter inherits her aunt’s bookstore in a small town north of Chicago, she plans to sell it and add the proceeds to her nonexistent “investment portfolio.” But plans change when Madeline discovers the store isn’t making money and she gets passed over for promotion at her firm. She quits in protest, takes the train north, and decides to work at the store to prep it for sale. Madeline soon finds herself at odds with employees Jessica and Courtney; when she also finds herself attracted to an affianced man, it only confuses the entire situation.
After blowing up her marriage two years earlier, Jessica has found solace working at the bookstore and a kindred spirit within its owner, Maddie Cullen. But when Maddie dies and her niece, Madeline, barges in like a bulldozer, Jessica pushes at the new owner in every way-until she trips over common ground. Soon the women are delving into online dating and fashion makeovers, and Jessica feels the pull to rediscover her art, a love she thought long behind her.
After a night of bad decisions leaves the store in peril, Courtney arrives and tries to save the day. While she, too, found sanctuary in the little bookstore, she knows it’s under-insured, in the red, and will never survive. When she discovers her teenage daughter has played a part in vandalizing the store, Courtney taps into strength she didn’t know existed-or had long forgotten. The quietest of the three, she steps up and finds a way to save her family, the store, and the precious friendships that have grown within it.
The Printed Letter Bookshop is the story of friends who find each other-and themselves-in a place none of them ever expected."
The Printed Letter Bookshop, by Katherine Reay, is an incredibly moving novel of friendship, forgiveness, and self-discovery. Told cogently through the unique perspectives of three very different women, Ms. Reay weaves a story that is an intricate tapestry of loss, learning, life, and love.
A highlight of this novel is the superbly written characterization. Throughout the story, the characters are authentic and believable. Their motivations, desires, insecurities, mistakes, and actions are well-developed and resonate with vulnerability, truth, and emotion. As the characters contemplate their choices and persevere through the consequences that follow, they grow in wisdom and confidence. Their faith is also strengthened as they learn to trust in grace, forgiveness, and abiding love.
The themes within this book are poignant and thought-provoking. As it explores rejection, ambition, and assumption, this novel gently and creatively offers opportunities for healing and restoration through compassion, hope, and humility. The bookshop setting of this story is also profoundly relevant and meaningful. This special shop is a haven that draws the characters together and unites them in a common purpose and a shared devotion.
Ms. Reay is a truly talented author with an obvious love of literature and a considerable talent for storytelling. The Printed Letter Bookshop is a notably entertaining, edifying, and memorable novel, and I recommend it wholeheartedly.
About the Author: Katherine Reay
Katherine Reay is the national bestselling and award-winning author of Dear Mr. Knightley, Lizzy and Jane, The Brontë Plot, A Portrait of Emily Price, The Austen Escape, and The Printed Letter Bookshop. All Katherine’s novels are contemporary stories with a bit of classical flair. Katherine holds a BA and MS from Northwestern University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, and isa wife, mother, former marketer, and avid chocolate consumer. After living all across the country and a few stops in Europe, Katherine now happily resides outside Chicago, IL. You can meet her at www.katherinereay.com; Facebook: KatherineReayBooks; Twitter: @katherine_reay; or Instagram: @katherinereay.
More from Katherine“Don’t you love bookshops?
Every time I walk into a bookstore, it feels like a rainbow cracked open and rained a kaleidoscope of light, life and possibilities before me. I find worlds within the world and a call to adventure.
Each bookshop tells a different story. It tells of its loyal beloved customer base. It reflects the personality of its owner and staff. It carries the aura of the stories it offers to us.
And it was the perfect place to dig into lives, hearts and book loves of Janet, Claire and Madeline. These three women, at different stages in life, meet at the Printed Letter Bookshop, with all the romance and wonder it holds, and learn to work through their challenges together. They become the friends that each didn’t know she was missing.
There is also a fourth woman I loved spending time with in the Printed Letter Bookshop — its original owner, Maddie Carter. Maddie doesn’t step onto the stage even once, but her presence, her love and her guiding hand are apparent from page one as Janet, Claire, and Madeline grow in friendship and in faith.
The Printed Letter Bookshop is a love letter to books, a testament to the beauty of new beginnings and a sweet reminder of the power of friendship. I hope you savor your time with these three women — And, book lovers rejoice, there is a list of all the books they allude to in the back of the book!”
To celebrate her tour, Katherine is giving away a paperback copy of The Printed Letter Bookshop to one lucky winner!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway!