The Music Shop

The Music Shop

A love story and a journey through music, the exquisite and perfectly pitched new novel from the bestselling author of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry and The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy...

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Title:The Music Shop
Author:Rachel Joyce
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Music Shop Reviews

  • Miriam Smith

    What a delightful and enjoyable read "The Music Shop" by Rachel Joyce is!

    It doesn't demand constant attention or keep you awake at night, it's just a lovely nostalgic story that makes you feel so happy when reading it, it's almost like you're floating through the pages (though the ending did have me in emotional goosebumps).

    "The Music Shop" is a very character driven novel. Set in 1988 the story is about Frank who owns a music shop selling only vinyl records - don't mention Cd's!! He knows eve

    What a delightful and enjoyable read "The Music Shop" by Rachel Joyce is!

    It doesn't demand constant attention or keep you awake at night, it's just a lovely nostalgic story that makes you feel so happy when reading it, it's almost like you're floating through the pages (though the ending did have me in emotional goosebumps).

    "The Music Shop" is a very character driven novel. Set in 1988 the story is about Frank who owns a music shop selling only vinyl records - don't mention Cd's!! He knows everything about music and always finds the right album the customers need. One day a mysterious woman walks into his life - German Ilse Brauchmann - and from then on everything in his world changes.

    There's some really wonderful characters in this fabulous story from the main protagonist Frank (everyone needs a Frank in their life) to Maud a tattooist who says so little but expresses so much. I loved the developing relationship between Frank and Ilse and with Kit the endearing naive shop assistant added into the mix, things don't always go to plan.

    There's such a lovely community feel to Unity Street where the shop is located, with its multicultural residents and shop keepers living their simple and uncomplicated lives, where every event or change in routine is picked over and analysed in such a humorous and light hearted way. Customers would go into Frank's shop lost and come out found, having discovered the right music for their troubles and feeling healed.

    I really enjoyed reading this book, there's nothing to not like about it - without a doubt it's made me feel differently about music and I will certainly be listening to it in a completely new way from now on.

    Rachel Joyce is a very talented and established author and I look forward to reading more books by her.

    5 stars!

  • Cheri

    !! NOW AVAILABLE !!

    4.5 Stars

    The shop was difficult to navigate with boxes packed in everywhere one looked; every nook and cranny had records, although none were classified. There were two booths for listening with turntables

    !! NOW AVAILABLE !!

    4.5 Stars

    The shop was difficult to navigate with boxes packed in everywhere one looked; every nook and cranny had records, although none were classified. There were two booths for listening with turntables in between. And Frank, as much of a fixture as the records, felt it was best to keep the shop open late into the evening for those passing by in need of music.

    You could find what you needed, as long as it was on vinyl. And if you didn’t know what you wanted or needed, Frank could always tell exactly what you did need. Stacks of classical, rock, blues, jazz, punk, heavy metal, he carried it all – as long as it was on vinyl.

    In 1974, the year Frank bought his shop, Britain was beginning a recession that year, but he didn’t want to quibble over the asking price, and so he bought this place, despite the stench, despite the condition it was in, despite the crumbling masonry falling now and then.

    He began to tackle the things that needed tackling right away. Slowly, he began to make repairs, plastering walls, repairing pipes, fixing the roof, and replacing the windows. People begin to pop into the shop just to see how it’s coming along, and he begins to know his neighbors better. Word spreads about his shop, and slowly, over time, he builds up a somewhat regular clientele. His customers are amazed that he always seems to know just the right music for them.

    His mother had told him when he was six.

    Why? He questioned her.

    By the time his shop is up and running, music has changed. Moved beyond vinyl to 8-track tapes, then cassette tapes, and then, by 1988, came CDs. Shiny, eye-catching and new. But Frank remains steadfast in his determination to keep in the old and blocking the way for those new, shiny objects. In this neighborhood, it feels as though time has marched on, but time seems to have forgotten this neighborhood, these people.

    Throughout this story are many quirky and endearing characters, but there is one character that really stands out from the rest: Ilse, a young woman who may wear her heart on her sleeve, but that sleeve is made of amour. He first meets her when she faints just outside the door to the music shop. A new person in this neighborhood is worthy of notice, but there’s something about her that sets her apart from them. It’s not just the clothes or the gloves that she wears, it’s not her green coat, or her German accent that sneaks through when she speaks, and she’s just a bit of an enigma. And that difference is something they all seem to find intriguing.

    There are a host of other characters, Father Anthony, Maud, and Kit, with the occasional glance back in time to Frank’s memories of his mother, Peg. Each character is uniquely charming, even grumpy Maud. There are also those that wander into the shop as a break in their day of wandering the streets.

    There is a considerable amount of conversation about music, which should be obvious since it is a book that is based on the comings and goings of people in a music shop, but the range of eras and genres of music is fairly eclectic. I loved this, the discussions which were less about music than about the feelings evoked, what the artist was trying to say, to convey to those listening.

    The description of this book says that it is “a love story and a journey through music,” however there are many different kinds of love stories, as many as there are different songs, and this story deals with more than one way that love is shared. I would say that this is a love story / song to music, and the ability that both music and words have of breaking, and healing, our hearts.

    In a very basic sense, there’s an essence to

    which charmed me as much as her

    which I loved. There’s a raw, but not overly sentimental charm to these characters, as well as an emotional journey over time, as well. Like Harold’s followers, you’ll be cheering these characters on in their journeys.

    Pub Date: 02 Jan 2018

    Many thanks for the ARC provided by Random House Publishing Group / Random House

  • Amalia Gavea

    The blurb of this beautiful book contained two words that won me over on the spot. ‘’Music’’ and ‘’1980s’’. I was born in 1985, so technically, I am a child of the 90s, but I think that these two decades share the same spirit of a certain kind of innocence, before the coming of the new millennium and all the ‘’gifts’’ it brought (yeah, right…) I’m not a big fan of the music that conquered the 8

    The blurb of this beautiful book contained two words that won me over on the spot. ‘’Music’’ and ‘’1980s’’. I was born in 1985, so technically, I am a child of the 90s, but I think that these two decades share the same spirit of a certain kind of innocence, before the coming of the new millennium and all the ‘’gifts’’ it brought (yeah, right…) I’m not a big fan of the music that conquered the 80s, but when I happen to listen to a chart-hit of the era, I travel back to my childhood and the parties when we were 9-10 years old.

    Joyce pays homage to the beauty of the vinyls, the nostalgia that is connected with them, before the shiny CDs took over. Personally, I never liked cassettes, although God knows we had more than we could count. In this story, we find ourselves in London, during the last years of the 80s and in a music shop that sells vinyls exclusively. Frank, the owner, is surrounded by a quirky set of characters who aid him in his struggle to keep the spirit of the neighbourhood alive against modernity. One day, a lovely young woman, wearing a green coat and with her hands hidden in gloves, faints right outside his shop. And his life begins to change.

    Now, the blurb may make us think that this is going to be a light, carefree read. Essentially, a romance. It isn’t. Not entirely, at least. And most definitely, it is not a romance. It is a story that contains a heart-warming, tender, well-constructed relationship, but to call it a ‘’’romance’’ wouldn’t do it justice. In my opinion, this is Contemporary Quirky Fiction at its best. (...I just made up a genre in order to justify my silly definition, but anway…) Each character, from Frank to Ilse, to the various customers who have been helped by him, is integral to the story. There are personal stories of sadness and pain, of hope and joy and remembrance, people trying to soothe their wounds and keep the memories alive through music. This is what Frank regards as his mission.

    The characters of Frank and Ilse are the best example of how an author can create a romantic relationship that will touch even the sworn enemies of anything romance-related (...that is moi…) Frank is loyal to his job, somewhat a loner in the extreme, and perhaps a bit too empathetic and stuck to the past. A realistic protagonist that you wish you had as your friend back in that day. Ilse is sensitive, bright, kind and with a heavy dose of mystery trailing behind her.Initially, I thought there would have been an element of magical realism in her, that’s how ethereal and mysterious she seemed. Father Anthony (loved him to piece, he is everything a priest is supposed to be), Kit and Maud consist Frank’s ‘’gang’’ and they are as sympathetic and weird as you can get. Maud wasn’t much to my liking, I didn’t have any sympathy for her attitude, but to each their own…I am a bit of a potty-mouth myself, but she seemed to be continually disrespectful

    Joyce writes in a manner that is immediate, fresh and lyrical at the same time. She provides a treat for every lover of music. At the mention of every composer, every singer, every band, I could hear the notes partying (or waltzing or praying) in my head. I was reminded of all the extraordinary music creations the human mind has conceived. Even the quality pop-rock of the 1980s and the 90s...So it triggers a major level of nostalgia for an era when a singer didn't have to appear on stage, dressed only in the underwear or in a meat-dress in order to become famous or to make up for the lack of any talent. I give extra points for the reference to

    , my favourite hymn to the Virgin Mary. Also bonus points for what I consider the most beautiful piece to come from Iceland,

    .

    For me, the major question of the novel has to do with the strength of our principles. Frank refuses to go with the flow, if it means betraying his ideals and all he is living for.Why should modern times demand of someone to become an altogether different person? Why should we offend what we don’t agree with and look down on those we consider ‘’old school’’? This is very relevant in our current times with politics, religion, society in general. Some of us stick to certain values. If others consider it ‘’Ancient History’’ that’s all very well, but respecting different opinions should be a bidirectional thing. So, as you see, this book definitely gives you plenty to think about.

    This is a book that will appeal to practically everyone. The music lovers, the fans of the 80s, the followers of the vinyls, the Londonphiles, the readers who wish for a contemporary read with something to say and themes we can all relate to. I even forgave the somewhat ‘’cheesy’’ ending:)

    Many thanks to Random House and NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  • PattyMacDotComma

    4.5★

    Frank is a rumpled older fellow with a large, eclectic collection of vinyl records in a rundown shop in a rundown little side-street in a rundown part of London, which developers are eyeing for new housing.

    Kit is the clumsy kid he’s taken under his wing to help out in the shop (when he isn’t breaking things), and there ae various side characters who also

    4.5★

    Frank is a rumpled older fellow with a large, eclectic collection of vinyl records in a rundown shop in a rundown little side-street in a rundown part of London, which developers are eyeing for new housing.

    Kit is the clumsy kid he’s taken under his wing to help out in the shop (when he isn’t breaking things), and there ae various side characters who also do business in the street: undertaker, tattooist, you get the idea. There are some people who have lived there for years, and there are some cheap rooms to let. It's a neighbourhood. Yes, it's run-down. Yes the buildings are crumbling. But yes, these people need each other and their homes.

    Frank’s shelves are arranged in such a way that only he knows where anything is. He sorts his records by putting like with like. The thing is, only Frank know why one piece of music belongs with another, a symphony with an Aretha Franklin along with Johnny Cash or someone.

    Frank ‘reads’ people. He doesn’t know how, but he listens, truly listens when they tell him why they’re looking for music – a breakup, a celebration, a moment of reflection. They don’t know what they’re looking for, but Frank does. He might hand them a concerto and a pop song, send them into one of his listening booths (converted wardrobes) and watch their faces light up when they hear their just-right selections.

    This reminds me of

    , with its peculiar collection of books and odd customers, but this is a unique story about some very particular music. We are given snippets of Frank’s growing up with his self-absorbed mother, Peg, a musical genius (in her way). He always call his mother by name.

    She loves Beethoven, Handel, Miles Davis. Frank says she crashes through the boundaries like jazz musicians do. She told him

    Peg’s musical influence obviously soaked deeply into him, and it’s all very well that Frank loves the shop and people love Frank, but it doesn’t pay the bills. Is he doing all right?

    When the mysterious, lovely German, Ilse Brauchmann wanders in, everything changes.

    I think some readers have made lists of all the music mentioned, and I can see why. I didn't, but I will have to go listen to Miles Davis though. Here’s why.

    Good enough for me! (And to think I was going to give away all of our old vinyl – yikes!)

    Many thanks to NetGalley and Random House for the preview copy from which I’ve quoted (so quotes may change).

  • Paromjit

    This is a wonderful novel set in the late 1980s London, that evokes the culture and music of the era, and the economic decline hitting local communities and the ever encroachment of developers threatening the identity of a place, and its people. In the midst of the change taking place is Frank, running his Indie Music Shop, welcoming everyone and drawing an offbeat crowd. The CD has taken off, but Frank is not interested, preferring vinyl, in which there is a current resurgence. Amidst the growi

    This is a wonderful novel set in the late 1980s London, that evokes the culture and music of the era, and the economic decline hitting local communities and the ever encroachment of developers threatening the identity of a place, and its people. In the midst of the change taking place is Frank, running his Indie Music Shop, welcoming everyone and drawing an offbeat crowd. The CD has taken off, but Frank is not interested, preferring vinyl, in which there is a current resurgence. Amidst the growing closure of local businesses, Frank stands by the strength of his convictions, an idealist in Thatcher's Britain that is geared to crushing idealism with its gods of ruthless capitalism and grasping consumerism. Frank is a kind and compassionate man, with a magical gift of honing into the piece of music his customers need, rather than what they may be wanting.

    German Ilse Brauchmann faints outside Frank's shop, she is destined to rock Frank's world. Ilse is a woman with secrets, getting married, dresses in green and is never to be seen without her gloves. We get a real sense of community as a raft of stories are unveiled about those who visit the store such as the bank manager, that include loss and other troubles that music helps and resolves, all thanks to Frank. Ilse's entry into Frank's life brings back his memories of Peg, his eccentric mother responsible for initiating and informing his unsurpassed musical knowledge. His problematic relationship with Peg haunts him. Frank gives music lessons to Ilse in a cafe, with a waitress that becomes invested in the blossoming love affair between the couple. Frank struggles to express his feelings to Ilse, which is ironic given how effectively Frank tunes into the feelings of others. This is a tale inhabited with a wide array of quirky characters, Maude the tattooist, Father Anthony, Kit and others, that charm and beguile. Frank and Ilse's relationship founders, years pass until Ilse returns to a changed landscape and people. Is it possible that love can be resurrected against all the odds with the power of music?

    Rachel Joyce writes a love letter to all that music can be in this lovely novel. It is a story of loss, love, pain, friendship, and community solidarity. A community that tries to support Frank, after he has helped them despite the wrecking ball to community support that are the developers in London. Above all else, it is about the healing power of music, its capacity to unite, ease trauma, evoke and access memories, inspire and help address our deepest needs. It forces Frank to connect with his past and with his feelings. It highlights how music is nothing without the silences, which have a power of their own. Joyce has a knack for creating a range of characters which cannot fail to engage the reader. Additionally, the book is bound to serve as an education in music to many readers from the classical composers, to Aretha, and to the inimitable Sex Pistols and so much more. An engaging and entertaining book. Thanks to Random House Transworld for an ARC.

  • Julie

    The Music Shop by Rachel Joyce is a 2018 Random House publication.

    A quirky, but sweet love story wrapped inside a loving ode to music-

    I love stories like this one where a group of people, from various walks of life, all of whom are misfits or eccentric in one way or another, but are kind and giving souls, converge to create a delightful and unique tale of friendship and love.

    The music shop is the absolute perfect backdrop for such a story, reminding us of how important a role music, of all ki

    The Music Shop by Rachel Joyce is a 2018 Random House publication.

    A quirky, but sweet love story wrapped inside a loving ode to music-

    I love stories like this one where a group of people, from various walks of life, all of whom are misfits or eccentric in one way or another, but are kind and giving souls, converge to create a delightful and unique tale of friendship and love.

    The music shop is the absolute perfect backdrop for such a story, reminding us of how important a role music, of all kinds, plays in our lives.

    The story is set in the mid-eighties, in London, where Frank has set up an indie music shop, in a neighborhood struggling to survive in rapidly changing times.

    As the story opens, we watch in fascinated awe as Frank shows off his unique talent of choosing just the right song for his customers, even if they are initially skeptical. He is never wrong and wins the utmost respect of his clients, who have discovered artists and songs they never would have otherwise, thanks to Frank.

    But, an ominous threat is hanging over Frank’s shop- CD’s. While vinyl is being aggressively shoved out of the way in favor of compact discs, Frank steadfastly refuses to sell them. He pays a high cost for his stubbornness as fewer people will work with him or they charge him more money for their products.

    But, life will turn on a dime, when a woman faints in front of his shop. Her name is Ilse Brauchmann, and she cast an uneasy charm on Frank, his shop, and in fact the entire neighborhood.

    From here, the reader will watch as Frank and Ilse form a wobbly relationship that slowly develops into something much more substantial. But, despite the sincerity and strength of those feelings, old abuses and disappointments may stymie their development and growth. Can they admit their feelings for each other or will unforeseen circumstance tear them apart for good?

    Movies often release soundtracks, so why can’t we do the same with books? How cool would that be? This book has a definitive musical backdrop that would make a great addition to anyone’s playlist, especially if you love the eighties. The music fit perfectly alongside the eccentric, damaged, and wounded souls in this story, who fight on moral grounds, who were like a family, despite their eccentricities.

    Some people adapt and change with the times, accepting the inevitable, while others fight against it with nobility, even if it ends up in futility. Yet, there are occasions, despite the odds, they still manage to carve out a niche for themselves, never having to sacrifice their own convictions.

    Frank was like that, and I admired his tenacity, in standing up to corporate pressure the way he did.

    I loved all the characters featured in this story, all of whom were flawed in some way, all with heavy burdens to bear, making it easy to sympathize with them. While the story has that oddball quirkiness to it, that whimsical and nostalgic quality that feels so charming, wry humor and a few laugh out loud moments, there is a dark undertone to the story, that our brain acknowledges, but it is so offset by the tone, the bark feels worse than the bite, but it hangs in the air like a thundercloud that refuses to dissipate. It does seem to take an inordinately long time before the sun finally pokes through those clouds.

    There was one issue I had with the story, which was the whiplash inducing slamming on of the brakes to one section of the story, disrupting the continuity- which left me feeling disoriented for a time. The momentum that had steadily climbed to that climactic moment, almost tanked. I felt like I had lost something significant in that vacuum of time. The warp speed of the last quarter of the book almost choked the life out of the hard- earned love and fragile emotions the reader had steadily built up to that point.

    However, the story did rally in a come from behind win, earning some redemption points with a sweet and tender conclusion that left me with all the warm and fuzzy feels.

    Ultimately, this is an offbeat, feel good story, and heaven knows we could all use more of those!!

    3.5 stars rounded up

  • Larry H

    I'm somewhere between 4 and 4.5 stars.

    —Victor Hugo

    Music has always been one of my greatest passions, alongside my love of reading. I have the largest iPod Apple ever made, and it doesn't accommodate my entire music collection—how can I get rid of a song?

    For me, music is such a trigger of emotion, and a specific song can easily transport me to a time, a place, a special memory. So why it took me so long to read Rache

    I'm somewhere between 4 and 4.5 stars.

    —Victor Hugo

    Music has always been one of my greatest passions, alongside my love of reading. I have the largest iPod Apple ever made, and it doesn't accommodate my entire music collection—how can I get rid of a song?

    For me, music is such a trigger of emotion, and a specific song can easily transport me to a time, a place, a special memory. So why it took me so long to read Rachel Joyce's lovely

    , I'll never know.

    "Frank could not play music, he could not read a score, he had no practical knowledge whatsoever, but when he sat in front of a customer and truly listened, he heard a kind of song. He wasn't talking a full-blown symphony. It would be a few notes; at the most, a strain. And it didn't happen all the time, only when he let go of being Frank and inhabited a space that was more in the middle. It had been this way ever since he could remember."

    Frank owns a record shop on a rapidly deteriorating, dead-end street in a London suburb. It's the late 1980s, and vinyl is struggling to survive over cassettes and the increasingly popular CD, but Frank is a purist. He'll never sell anything other than records, despite the reps from the different labels trying to convince him that he's making a huge mistake. Vinyl sounds the best, and provides so much more of an experience for the listener.

    Even though his store, and the other stores that surround it, isn't doing that well financially, the store serves as a gathering place for people in the neighborhood, people who come to Frank in need of help, and he finds them the exact song they need, even when they don't know it. Into this chaos one afternoon comes a beautiful woman, Ilse Brauchmann. Frank feels an instant connection to her, with her regal bearing and her slight German accent. He finds himself thinking of her constantly, yet Ilse talks of a fiancée, and clearly has secrets she doesn't want to divulge.

    Nearly all his life, Frank has never let anyone get too close to him, for fear of getting hurt as he had in his past. But he has fallen head over heels in love with Ilse, despite the fact that he knows next to nothing about her. When she asks him to give her music lessons, after some initial reluctance, he dives in wholeheartedly, teaching Ilse about all different songs, artists, and genres of music, and sharing the way those songs made him feel. It is the closest he can come to sharing his heart with her.

    As he tries to come to terms with his feelings, Frank is struggling financially to keep the store afloat, to fight those who refuse to sell him records because he won't buy CDs. He tries to keep his neighbors feeling secure despite the street's falling into greater disrepair, and a development company making everyone offers to buy their property to build something new. When Frank finds out that Ilse isn't quite whom she says she is, it threatens to debilitate Frank for good, as the betrayal opens old wounds and revives old hurts he had never quite gotten past.

    "Sometimes all that people needed was to know they were not alone. Other times it was more a question of keeping them in touch with their feelings until they wore them out—people clung to what was familiar, even when it was painful."

    is a book with such heart and charm, such vivid characters, and it was truly such a lovely read. Joyce perfectly captures the mood of London in the late 1980s, as the gulf between the haves and the have-nots grew ever wider. She also captures the passion of a true music lover, the beauty of friendship, and the walls we build around our heart to protect ourselves after we've been hurt too many times.

    As I learned from one of her earlier books,

    (

    ), Joyce is a consummate storyteller who draws you in and makes you care about her characters. One character in particular, Frank's employee Kit, felt strangely underdeveloped, and you never really understood him despite his key role in the plot.

    I did feel the story took a little too long to truly get going, and then dragged a bit toward its conclusion. But in the end, even if I wasn't surprised by the ending, the book really touched my heart, and the music lover in me savored every note.

    is one of those books that felt like a warm hug, kind of like Gabrielle Zevin's

    .

    See all of my reviews at

    , or check out my list of the best books I read in 2017 at

    .

  • Esil

    Barely 3 stars. So dull... I loved Rachel Joyce's

    and

    . She has a talent for delving into deep emotions through quirky characters. The Music Shop set off to do the same, but unfortunately I didn't feel like it delivered. In the 1980s, Frank runs a small vinyl record shop. He is huge and sensitive. He has a knack for connecting people with music that soothes their troubled souls. Visitors to the shop adore him. But vinyl

    Barely 3 stars. So dull... I loved Rachel Joyce's

    and

    . She has a talent for delving into deep emotions through quirky characters. The Music Shop set off to do the same, but unfortunately I didn't feel like it delivered. In the 1980s, Frank runs a small vinyl record shop. He is huge and sensitive. He has a knack for connecting people with music that soothes their troubled souls. Visitors to the shop adore him. But vinyl is going down the tubes and Frank refuses to get with the times and sell cds. A few other misfits form part of the ensemble, including distressed Ilse, with whom Frank seems to be engaged in a push me pull you awkward tangle. And I won't say more to avoid spoilers but it's not hard to guess where this one ends up heading. Maybe I'm just being grumpy, but unlike her previous books, this time it felt like Joyce's characters were missing emotional depth or originality. I'm not going to give up on her yet, but I hope she gets back in her game next time round. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read an advance copy.

  • Angela M

    2.5 rounded up

    A cast of quirky, misfits who are drawn to each other with Frank at the center in this neighborhood in Great Britain in 1988. You might call him the music whisperer with his knack for choosing songs that tend to elevate people depending on their circumstances. Frank owns a music store selling only vinyl records, refusing to go with the popular CD. His talent for knowing just what music will fix what ails other people is fun to watch as lonely, sad people listen to the music he cho

    2.5 rounded up

    A cast of quirky, misfits who are drawn to each other with Frank at the center in this neighborhood in Great Britain in 1988. You might call him the music whisperer with his knack for choosing songs that tend to elevate people depending on their circumstances. Frank owns a music store selling only vinyl records, refusing to go with the popular CD. His talent for knowing just what music will fix what ails other people is fun to watch as lonely, sad people listen to the music he chooses for them and then come to some realization of themselves. Sadly, while Frank can figure out what strangers need, he can’t quite deal with his own feelings. I don’t know enough about music to really know some of the classical or jazz titles but certainly recognized some of songs. This is an ode to music, a sentimental love story, a story of friendship. However, it just fell a little short for me.

    Harold Frye and Queenie Hennessy, characters I loved from Joyce’s previous novels were the reasons I decided to read this book . But this book just didn’t grab me in the same way and neither did the characters. Chalk it up to expectations that were too high. It’s a quick read with a predictable ending. I rounded up since it turned out to be a feel good story that we all can use once in a while. There are many who have loved this story and rated it higher. I recommend that you read those reviews as well.

    I received an advanced copy of this book from Random House Publishing Group - Random House through NetGalley.

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