Review: The Bookman's Tale by Charlie Lovett

Description (from cover):

‘A mysterious portrait ignites an antiquarian bookseller’s search through time and the works of Shakespeare for his lost love.
Guaranteed to capture the hearts of everyone who truly loves books, The Bookman’s Tale is a former bookseller’s sparkling novel and a delightful exploration of one of literature’s most tantalizing mysteries with echoes of Shadow of the Wind and A.S. Byatt’s Possession.
Hay-on-Wye, 1995. Peter Byerly isn’t sure what drew him into this particular bookshop. Nine months earlier, the death of his beloved wife, Amanda, had left him shattered. The young antiquarian bookseller relocated from North Carolina to the English countryside, hoping to rediscover the joy he once took in collecting and restoring rare books. But upon opening an eighteenth-century study of Shakespeare forgeries, Peter is shocked when a portrait of Amanda tumbles out of its pages. Of course, it isn’t really her. The watercolor is clearly Victorian. Yet the resemblance is uncanny, and Peter becomes obsessed with learning the picture’s origins.
As he follows the trail back first to the Victorian era and then to Shakespeare’s time, Peter communes with Amanda’s spirit, learns the truth about his own past, and discovers a book that might definitely prove Shakespeare was, indeed, the author of all his plays.’

My thoughts:

I love books. That much, of course, is obvious. So to have a book about the love of books, well it makes sense that this bookish girl would read it. Right? I can spend hours in a bookstore, just to be surrounded by books. Going to the library is a special treat. I was glad to have something that I could relate to in this book. Peter Byerly loves books. He loves to restore them and to learn about them and they bring out a confidence in him that he doesn’t have outside of the book world. I knew that I would love this book before I even picked it up and I wasn’t far from the truth.
This book embodies the passions of a book lover and it really spoke to me. It was a great read because it was suspense and knowledge in one book. Think The Da Vinci Code meets the bookish world. It has action, murder, suspense, finding oneself through grief, and a little bit of romance thrown in for good measure. I read this book in what seems like hours. It kept me captive and I actually wanted to sit down and read this one every chance that I got. 
Peter Byerly sometimes got on my nerves because he basically is a wimp. Seriously. I wasn’t overly fond of Peter, but I got over it. We watch as Peter struggles with Amanda’s death and goes through the mourning process with the help of his beloved books. I highly recommend this book to book lovers who enjoyed the thrill of The Da Vinci Code but can truly appreciate the gift that books are. I was so glad to have read this book and I hope others find it just as enchanting as I did.

Overall Rating: 4

Title:  The Bookman’s Tale
Author:  Charlie Lovett
Series:  N/A
Publisher:  Viking Adult
Publication Date:  May 28, 2013
Pages:  368
Genre:  Fiction
Get It:  Amazon; Barnes & Noble

Disclaimer: This book was selected from the library by myself and I reviewed this book without compensation of any kind. All thoughts and opinions are solely mine.

9 thoughts on “Review: The Bookman's Tale by Charlie Lovett

  1. So glad you enjoyed the novel…I enjoyed it very much, even though the long list of owners of the “holy grail” confused me a bit. I actually liked the way the author created Peter. Many male protagonists are “hero” types, daring-do super heroes that can leap tall buildings and dive head-long into danger. The fact that Peter had a true social anxiety (which is a very real medical condition) made his story more unique and his comfort in the world of antiquities very believable. Good stuff. I'm looking forward to his next book, which I think involves Jane Austen. 🙂


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