A faded list.
Nine favourite stories.
For two strangers, friendship is only a page away . . .
When Mukesh Patel pops to the local library, forgoing his routine of grocery shopping and David Attenborough documentaries, he has no idea his life’s about to change.
He meets Aleisha, a reluctant librarian and the keeper of a curious reading list – just a scrappy piece of paper with the names of 9 stories. It doesn’t seem anything special. Yet something tells her to keep it close . . .
Story by story, Mukesh and Aleisha work their way through the list – their worries slipping away with every encounter, with every world discovered in their unlikely book club of two.
A fresh chance at life, at friendship, wasn’t on the cards for these lonely souls – but every story starts somewhere . . .
Once in a while a book comes along that blows you away and this is that book.
Any title that includes the word book or reading in it will always win me over. The actual reading list is central to this story. I already have a very long list of books I want to read and have since added more after reading this novel. There are a few books on it that I have already read and loved. To Kill A Mocking Bird is another that is on the list which I bought a few years back so will certainly be bumping it up my list as the author manages to sell each of these books to her readers.
The story flicks mostly between Mukesh, an elderly widow and Aleisha, a teenager who is working in the local library for the summer. These two characters couldn’t be anymore different yet thanks to a reading list, we see a wonderful friendship form between the two. Whilst the story covers grief and mental health amongst other things, more than anything, it’s a reminder of how wonderful books and reading are.
Sometimes a book will come into our lives just when we need it most, something that we can relate to that can help us make sense of things and uplift us. It is also a great way of making friends. Since I fell back in love with reading, it has changed my life in so many ways and I have also made lots of friends, some that I have formed a very close bond with. That is all down to the love of books and this wonderful story reminded me of that and how powerful books can be.
The Reading List is almost a pilgrimage to reading and books. I was captivated by the characters and what was going on in their lives. Whilst it is in the main, an uplifting story, I’m not going to lie, I did ugly cry at some of it. I hadn’t expected to get that emotional but I did and I had to cry it out. If ever a book should be included on a list of must reads, this is it. If you are a book lover, you won’t be able to help but appreciate the message behind it. Add it to your reading list today!