Book review: ‘The Bookseller’ by Cynthia Swanson


Thirty-eight-year-old Kitty Miller is perfectly happy with her life. It’s the ‘60s, and except for the Cuba thing, life is good. Though she and her business partner, Frieda, haven’t found the men who were meant for them, they have adjusted to the sisterhood that they have. They are partners in a small bookstore, and until lately they have been doing well. A change in the streetcar route has curtailed the street traffic to the point where the viability of the store is in question. So, the discussions regarding a move to a shopping center are ongoing. Among other things, where to get the money is a concern.

For no apparent reason, this is when the dreams start. Kitty would fall asleep in one bedroom and wake up in another; not only was she in another bedroom, but also here she had a family: a husband and three children. And they all knew and loved her even though she didn’t know them. What could be more complicated than picking up your life in the middle, even if it was only an imaginary life. But it seemed so real. At some point she would wake up in her own bedroom and resume her real way of life with no memory of what had preceded there either, but the same concerns were there as had been before.

So, a pattern developed. She would fall asleep, dream, and have to deal with two alternate lives. In her real life, she learned that her “husband” had not even lived to have a first date, just a long phone conversation. In her dream life, she found various excuses to have people fill in the blanks. At first, the dream life seemed ideal, but as she came to know the situation better, she was desperate to escape. The main problem was that in the dream life, her parents had been killed in a plane crash. She knew that wasn’t true because she had picked them up at the airport. Why was this happening to her? How could she make it stop?

I was sure that the author could not develop a believable ending to this story. I was wrong.

Also by Cynthia Swanson: “The Glass Forest.”

Comments are closed.

  • County Line delivery delayed to rural Ontario customers

    July 3rd, 2020

    The U.S. Postal Service has not delivered this week’s County Line to rural Ontario subscribers, and we haven’t been able […]

    Brookwood graduation is July 24

    July 2nd, 2020

    Brookwood’s graduation is slated for Friday, July 24, but the nature of the ceremony will be determined by Monroe County’s Coulee Covid-19 Compass risk rating on Wednesday, July 22.

    Book review: ‘Winterkill’ by C.J. Box

    July 1st, 2020

    Joe Pickett is a game warden in Wyoming’s Bighorn Mountains.

    Ontario Public Library to begin phase two of reopening plan

    June 30th, 2020

    On Monday, July 6 we will begin phase two of our reopening plan, which allows you to make an appointment to use the library internet, computers, and printing services.

    Phase one of Wilton Public Library reopening starts July 6

    June 30th, 2020

    On July 6, Wilton Library will begin phase one of reopening by taking limited library appointments.

  • Kendall Gathering and All-School Reunion canceled

    June 29th, 2020

    The Kendall Gathering and All-School Reunion has been canceled for 2020.

    Motorcyclist severely injured in Wellington crash

    June 27th, 2020

    A motorcyclist sustained possible life-threatening injuries in a Thursday crash on Midway Avenue in the town of Wellington, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

    Two hurt in town of Forest motorcycle accident

    June 26th, 2020

    Two were injured in a single-motorcycle accident reported at 5:30 p.m. Thursday on Highway 33 at County Highway V, according to the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office.

    Royall graduation set for July 11

    June 25th, 2020

    Royall will host an in-person graduation Saturday, July 11, but it will not be open to the public, staff and other students.

    Book review: ‘The Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books: Christopher Columbus, His Son, and the Quest to Build the World’s Greatest Library’ by Edward Wilson-Lee

    June 25th, 2020

    First, some housekeeping: Hernando Colón (1488-1539), illegitimate son of Christopher Columbus, is the main subject of this book, and this is the Portuguese version of his name.

    Royall Education Notes: Staff, students met numerous challenges during closure

    June 24th, 2020

    Wow – Wow – Wow – What a crazy couple of months we have endured.

  • Archives