The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This may be the best book I read all year (I’m writing this in May, so we’ll see).
Nora Seed’s life is miserable. She lives in the small English town where she grew up. She’s lost her job. She can’t get a date. She’s given up on nearly everything she’s ever tried. And so she tries suicide.
That’s when she finds herself in the Midnight Library, where she has a chance to try lives she let pass her by and, in the process, deal with her regrets.
Matt Haig creates characters to care about, with all manner of foibles. He puts them in settings ranging from Sao Paulo to the Arctic, and helps them face themselves. In the process, he got me as a reader to think about how often we as humans chase our regrets. This says a lot about the human condition.
Nora’s various life threads all teach her something important that she carries with her into every subsequent one.
The book is beautifully written, with an entirely satisfying ending — and many laughs and tears along the way. Highly recommended.
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