Release Date: March 3, 2015
Published by: Harper
Source: Digital ARC / Edelweiss
Author Links: integritymodern.com
A provocative and hauntingly powerful debut novel reminiscent of Sliding Doors, The Bookseller follows a woman in the 1960s who must reconcile her reality with the tantalizing alternate world of her dreams
Nothing is as permanent as it appears . . .
Denver, 1962: Kitty Miller has come to terms with her unconventional single life. She loves the bookshop she runs with her best friend, Frieda, and enjoys complete control over her day-to-day existence. She can come and go as she pleases, answering to no one. There was a man once, a doctor named Kevin, but it didn’t quite work out the way Kitty had hoped.
Then the dreams begin.
Denver, 1963: Katharyn Andersson is married to Lars, the love of her life. They have beautiful children, an elegant home, and good friends. It's everything Kitty Miller once believed she wanted—but it only exists when she sleeps.
Convinced that these dreams are simply due to her overactive imagination, Kitty enjoys her nighttime forays into this alternate world. But with each visit, the more irresistibly real Katharyn’s life becomes. Can she choose which life she wants? If so, what is the cost of staying Kitty, or becoming Katharyn?
As the lines between her worlds begin to blur, Kitty must figure out what is real and what is imagined. And how do we know where that boundary lies in our own lives?
The Bookseller was a novel that I was able to breeze through in less than 2 days. The intriguing mystery regarding Kitty's two lives kept the pages turning, but this also wasn't a story filled with many complications or complexities, so this also made it a quick read.
Kitty goes through her daily routine as a single woman working alongside her best friend in their bookstore. When she sleeps at night, she dreams of another life with a husband and a family. This back-and-forth continues throughout the entire novel and increases in frequency as the story progresses. It just becomes a matter of deciding which world is real and learning the reasons as to why Kitty is imagining a world that doesn't exist.
Swanson did a wonderful job crafting all of the characters in this story. They were all truly enjoyable, including the protagonist herself.
The Bookseller isn't my typical read, but that's why I chose it. While I'm a huge fan of science fiction, fantasy, and horror novels (and always will be), I'm going to spend 2015 venturing a bit more outside of my norm. The Bookseller was definitely a good place to start.