Reading

The Midnight Library

Whether it is because of a career immersed in libraries or just that libraries provide intriguing settings for the storyteller, I am always drawn to stories (even badly written ones) where the library becomes its own character integral to the plot. For instance:

  • The Star Trek episode from the 60s set in a dying planet’s library;
  • When David Tennant, as the tenth Doctor, takes Donna (personally not my favorite of The Doctor’s companions despite her importance in saving all of humanity) to a planet-sized library holding every book every written where they meet River Song (definitely among my most favorite of the Whovian characters);
  • To Joss Wheadon’s setting for Buffy the Vampire Slayer where the school library is the gateway to magical powers, as well as the entry point for the terrifying beings that only Buffy can defeat;
  • And the list goes on…leading me to The Midnight Library and the most recent The Directors’ book discussion.

Chosen Best Book of 2020 in the general fiction category by nearly 74,000 Goodreads’ members, The Midnight Library introduces the reader to Nora Seed, a young woman so wracked by regrets she attempts suicide.  But in that in-between time – between life and death – she enters the Midnight Library with its infinite collection of green covered books all of which enumerate the stories of her life, each different depending on the subtle or dramatic decisions she made.

Unlike Buckaroo Banzai in one of my favorite movies, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, where Buckaroo is simultaneously a rock star, neurosurgeon, brilliant scientist, and a test pilot who just happens to save the world from evil alien invaders, Nora experiences one-by-one what might have been as Olympic swimmer, rock star, mother, or glaciologist.  Some lives are deeply unsatisfying while others are almost, but not quite, comfortable as she is suddenly inserted into these parallel realities.

Despite an abundance of book challenges, expertly curated title lists and even a fun assortment of book bingos to choose from, The Directors (my library loving, book reading, wine drinking group of retired friends) elected to reverse engineer its own reading challenge.  We read a book recommended by one of us and then assign our 2021 reading challenge nomenclature with The Midnight Library dubbed magical realism fantasy.

Happy reading!

Reading

Check our your library!

Libraries have always adapted to the changing world by expanding resources and services, even more so in these Covid times.   Celebrate National Library Week, April 4 – 10!  Visit your library online or in person (if allowed) to learn how you can check out books, technology, multimedia content, educational programs and so much more to help you be your best self.

Happy National Library Week!

Reading · Travel

The Directors

We had planned a July trip to the popular destination of Nissawa. Yes, I know this Minnesota town may not be on your travel go-to list, but we enjoyed time together in August 2018 that included good conversation, shopping and attending Wine & Words. It was while we were at that first author brunch that we named ourselves, The Directors. Plus, a walk in the Grand View gardens is always a beauthiful setting. But Covid-19 foiled our 2020 plans. Initially, we simply thought to forego the large dinner/brunch gatherings but then the event planners managed a major shift from on-site to virtual and so, today, we connected online to hear the six 2020 Wine & Words authors. This year the brunch social hour had the authors video chatting from their kitchens and, appropriately, sharing drink, food, and summer canning recipes.