Cosy story about a bookshop in London

The Little Bookshop of Lonely Hearts
von Annie Darling

When Lavinia Thorndyke dies at the age of 84, she leaves “Bookends”, her bookshop, to Posy Morland, who almost grew up in the shop and loves books and the shop means home for her and her younger brother. But “Bookends”, quite hidden at Rochester Mews, Bloomsbury, with old, now closed shops around, for years did not make any profit, with book chains like Waterstones just around the corner. Posy has only two years to make it a success, if not, it goes to Sebastian Thorndyke, Lavinia´s grandson. Together with her crew, Nina, Verity and Tom, she plans to rename the shop into “Happy Ever After”, paint it grey and pink as signature colors and to specialize on all kinds of romantic books, love stories, happy endings included. But Sebastian also found a new name for the shop “The Bloody Dagger”, painting it in black and red and selling only crime books …

This romantic novel is written in narrative form, with a personal narrator, focused on Posy. The story of Posy´s parents and of her childhood is given by Posy´s memories and flashbacks and leads to a better understanding of her character, behavior and acting. A special and witty story within the story is “Ravished by the Rake”, written by a very angry Posy.

The bookshop, the surroundings, the people of the neighborhood are well described and easily to imagine. The author finds a special personality for every member of the bookshop´s crew and together they are amiable.

At the age of 21, when their parents had died, Posy had taken the responsibility for her 8 years old brother and until today, eight years later, she still is firmly connected to the past and memories of her parents. She somehow is afraid of the responsibility for the bookshop and sometimes behaving like somebody much younger. I quite liked the character, but on the other hand I cannot understand why all female main protagonists since Bridget Jones have to be chaotic, messy, chubby biscuit eaters? In my opinion, the story with a just a little bit more self confident main character would have remained funny, enjoyable and romantic.

All in all, I have to say that I have enjoyed the book but as I love stories about books and bookshops, that I have read better ones and am a little bit disappointed.

Anyway, I am sure that readers and fans of Bridget Jones like books will love this one too, and enjoy a relaxed, entertaining reading time.