Title: The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend
Author: Katarina Bivald
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Published: January 19, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks / Landmark
My Rating: 4 stars
Once you let a book into your life, the most unexpected things can happen…
Broken Wheel, Iowa, has never seen anyone like Sara, who traveled all the way from Sweden just to meet her pen pal, Amy. When she arrives, however, she finds that Amy’s funeral has just ended. Luckily, the townspeople are happy to look after their bewildered tourist—even if they don’t understand her peculiar need for books.
Marooned in a farm town that’s almost beyond repair, Sara starts a bookstore in honor of her friend’s memory. All she wants is to share the books she loves with the citizens of Broken Wheel and to convince them that reading is one of the great joys of life. But she makes some unconventional choices that could force a lot of secrets into the open and change things for everyone in town.
Read on for my thoughts on The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend. No true spoilers, promise.
People who truly have a love affair with books understand that there is a kind of magic held within them. Some people read for entertainment, and like leaving a movie theater leave the story behind. Others will pull that story into their veins, making them part of their lives. Both are the correct reaction for each individual. Sara and Amy shared that deep vein love of books. Didn’t really matter what kind of books simply the joy of reading something that teaches or takes one to another place for an adventure. Although they had never met in person, through their letters back and forth a friendship had formed over the deep love of books.
When Sara made the decision to leave for Broken Wheel she had no idea that she would arrive in time for the ending of Amy’s funeral. How had the fates been so unkind to allow them to be so close to meeting and then snatch that joy away. But that was life and Sara was well accustomed to facing life.
Sara ends up staying in Broken Wheel at Amy’s home. In a town that is slowly dying there is a surprising wealth of characters to get to know and understand. While the townsfolk have been nothing but kind to Sara, she decides to use Amy’s overwhelming collection of books to open a bookstore in Broken Wheel – because no book should go unread and it is her way of giving something back for the kindness she’s been shown.
The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend is a lovingly story about books, our love of them, our obsession over them and perhaps even our misunderstanding of their purpose in our lives. If you are a book lover, I dare you to not find yourself somewhere within this book. One of my pet peeves is shared – that of series being left unfinished. (intellectually I know this is often the decision of the publishing house not the author – but still I’m invested in these lives and want the ending). So I understand this character very well.
I enjoyed The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend for it’s story and diversity of characters. I don’t think everyone is going to love this, but I do think every reader could discover something to like about this story – is after all about the love of books.
*I received an e-ARC of The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. That does not change what I think of this novel.*
Available in a wide variety of formats including the Kindle