Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry: A Novel Hardcover – April 1, 2014
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
In this sweet, uplifting homage to bookstores, Zevin perfectly captures the joy of connecting people and books. A. J. Fikry, the cantankerous owner of Island Books, is despondent after losing his beloved wife and witnessing the ever-declining number of sales at his small, quirky bookstore. In short order, he loses all patience with the new Knightly Press sales rep, his prized rare edition of Tamerlane is stolen, and someone leaves a baby at his store. That baby immediately steals A. J.’s heart and unleashes a dramatic transformation. Suddenly, the picture-book section is overflowing with new titles, and the bookstore becomes home to a burgeoning number of book clubs. With business on the uptick and love in his heart, A. J. finds himself becoming an essential new part of his longtime community, going so far as to woo the aforementioned sales rep (who loves drinking Queequeg cocktails at the Pequod Restaurant). Filled with interesting characters, a deep knowledge of bookselling, wonderful critiques of classic titles, and very funny depictions of book clubs and author events, this will prove irresistible to book lovers everywhere. --Joanne Wilkinson
“Zevin has done something old-fashioned and fairly rare these days. She has written an entertaining novel, modest in its scope, engaging and funny without being cloying or sentimental. On top of all that, it is marvelously optimistic about the future of books and bookstores and the people who love both.” ―The Washington Post
“This novel has humor, romance, a touch of suspense, but most of all love--love of books and bookish people and, really, all of humanity in its imperfect glory.” ―Eowyn Ivey, author of The Snow Child
“[A] jaunty little novel.” ―Entertainment Weekly
“Wade into summer reading with this sweet yet soulful tale of love, loss, the power of friendship--and books. Like sunshine on a breezy spring day, you won't want it to end.” ―Family Circle
“The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry reminds us what saves us all from a life of loneliness and isolation: our sense of empathy; our ability to love and be loved; our willingness to care and be cared for. Gabrielle Zevin has written a wonderful, moving, endearing story of redemption and transformation that will sing in your heart for a very, very long time.” ―Garth Stein, author of The Art of Racing in the Rain
“Readers who delighted in Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows's The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Rachel Joyce's The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, and Jessica Brockmole's Letters from Skye will be equally captivated by this adult novel by a popular YA author about a life of books, redemption, and second chances. Funny, tender, and moving, it reminds us all exactly why we read and why we love.” ―Library Journal, starred review
“A beautiful story about getting a second chance at love. A-” ―The A. V. Club
“The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry is a breezy, big-hearted treat, especially if you've ever wondered about the inner workings of America's national treasures--neighborhood bookstores.” ―Jami Attenberg, author of The Middlesteins
“In this sweet, uplifting homage to bookstores, Zevin perfectly captures the joy of connecting people and books . . . Filled with interesting characters, a deep knowledge of bookselling, wonderful critiques of classic titles, and very funny depictions of book clubs and author events, this will prove irresistible to book lovers everywhere.” ―Booklist
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Enter an absolutely delightful cast of secondary characters who populate the island and A.J.'s life. You're bound to love at least one - if not all - of them.
Next we have the unexpected hope and redemption of A.J. I'm not giving any spoilers here. Yes, it's a feel-good book. But it's more than that: it's a love letter to the power books have in our lives. If you have ever felt changed by a book, this novel will speak to you....you'll "get" it. And if you loved "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" or "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand" you'll find lots to love here, as well - not because the plots are similar, but because of the similar feel to the novels that comes from a good cast of eccentric townsfolk, a small community, and a sense of closeness among the characters.
So I'll leave you with this: if you love reading books, do not miss this one. (I wouldn't be at all surprised to see it made into a movie!)
My Thoughts: When I downloaded The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry: A Novel, I was looking forward to reading it…and expected to do so very soon. But life got in the way…and other books seemed to take precedence. So here I am, three years later, wondering what possessed me to let this charming book languish on my shelf.
But timing is everything, and when I did pick up this book, I fully immersed myself in it and felt a deep connection to the characters, the setting, and the feeling of being surrounded by books in one’s daily life.
I loved the idea of getting on a ferry and going to Alice Island to a charming bookstore, and I felt myself joining the character Amelia Loman, a publisher’s representative, as she made her first journey out there. Her first reactions to A.J. Fikry, a gruff and somewhat blunt character kept me turning the pages, happily enjoying the growing connection between Amelia and A.J.
And then there was Maya, a baby left in the bookstore with a note for A.J.
The story followed the characters over a period of years, and I couldn’t wait to see what each of them would do with their lives. Books were always the centerpiece, and when obstacles arose, or sadness came calling, the books carried them all along. The books helped them connect to characters, but also to others with whom they could talk about books. Definitely a sentiment to which bookish people can relate. 5 stars.
Most recent customer reviews
Find one...Read more
The seeing is a small Islas although there isn't a lot of of story of the Islas outside the bookstore.