If you have received any book recommendations from me or ready any of my book reviews, you are aware of my affinity for quirky characters. When I read the description of Confessions of a Curious Bookseller by Elizabeth Green, I thought it matched the quirky character trope – an odd used bookstore owner with family issues? Sign me up!
Fawn Birchill is a forty-something single woman who is partially estranged from her family. She owns a failing used bookstore in Philadelphia. She believes that her store has been a cornerstone of her community for the past twenty years. She is semi-happily single. She has a cat and also feeds the strays in her alley. She believes her three loyal employees are happy working for her. When a young, hip bookstore opens down the street, with comfy chairs, a coffee bar, knowledgeable employees and weekend evening entertainment, her world is turned upside down. Now she must deal with her employees abandoning her, her cat dying (wait until you read THAT part), caring (?) for her elderly renter Jane, much needed repairs to the store, the strained relationship with her family, and the trials of online dating. She also must figure out what to do about her pen pal, whom she has created a whole false identity for herself. Talk about getting caught up in a fantasy of your own making!!
I really wanted to like this book. I did finish it. The ending was kind of anticlimactic. I had a hard time liking Fern. I believe the character suffers from Narcissistic Personality Disorder. For me this book fell short of my expectations just as Fern’s employees fell short of hers. 2.5 stars.