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What a little surprise. I was thinking as I read your review how familiar the author's name sounded, tho sure I hadn't read any of his works. But I have! I'm very fond of the Frances books; they were all read to me as a child. Perhaps I'd like this as well.


It was a nice little surprise for me, too. I highly recommend it--I think I have yet to come across a review of it that is anything less than glowing if that helps! I believe it was also made into a movie which I am now curious to see. This is one I think I would like very much to reread!

vicki (skiourophile / bibliolathas)

This sounds gorgeous - one of those quiet books that leave one sort of stunned? Your point about contentment really struck a chord with me too; a lot to think about here.

Liz F

I've often looked at this book in the library and wondered about it but never actually made the move to take it out.
Your post about it makes it very clear that that was a mistake on my part and one I will have to remedy very soon.
Lovely review, thanks.


Yay! This book just made me feel good. It seems so simple but turns out to be deeper than expected. Contentment, yes, that's the thing to reach. And George Fairbain not minding being alive was marvelous. He provided such a nice contrast to the other two. I just picked up Hoban's The Mouse and His Child from the library. I've not started In Love yet. The heat and humidity are back so lolling on the couch and reading will likely be one of the few activities I will be up for the rest of this week.


This sounds like a book I'd like very mucht too. What a great review.


Yes, that is how this story was for me! The last few years for me have seen some upheavals both at home and at work, so I have grappled a lot with what it means to be happy and I think happiness is pretty ephemeral and am working on trying to be contented--not sure if I have it all straight, but the two seem like different things to me. I've still got a long ways to go with both states of being by the way--but I am working on them! :)


I think had I seen this on the library's shelves or even in the bookstore I might not have been inclined to pick it up either to be honest, but next time you see it do grab it and give it a go--I think you will be pleasantly surprised. It is a story I think I need to revisit in a year or so again! And thanks for the kind words!


Wasn't that such a great line? I loved it--it was sort of an epiphany moment for me and moved this book from a quirky pleasant story into something so much more--and then putting it all together....well, I can totally see now how you call this your favorite. I think it is a tie for me between the McPherson and this one. Such very different stories, but I loved them both. I love how it was so simple and subtly done. Let me know how his other book goes--I should see if my library has any of his books. I would only be afraid the others might not measure up, though from the comments on your post it seems as though his other books are worth searching out. I have only moved In Love to my nighstand. I was thinking I would just dive in, but I have a feeling this is going to be a case of 'don't be fooled by the length of the book' kind of story. I think I am going to start out reading the intro, but I might not get to it until the weekend now. The heat means my upstairs is already warm and toasty and I hate that--any lolling I do won't unfortunately include reading as I can't seem to concentrate when sweat is dripping down my back. Yuck. I should not complain since this summer has been relatively mild, but well, I can't help myself. I don't like hot weather.


Thank you Cath. And I think you would like this book very much, too! Since it is older hopefully your library will have a copy on their shelves!


Guy reviewed this a while back too. I think I would enjoy it. I like the idea of chance encounters and how they develop.
I like the idea that's it's about contentment versus happiness, as you say.


I'd never heard of this book until I read Stefanie's review. It sounds wonderful - I do have to be in the mood for these quirky/odd stories - but I know that NYRB books really deliver. Such finds aren't they? Great review, Danielle!


I will have to go look his review up. I have not read a review so far that has been less than glowing. I wasn't sure as I was reading if this was a book for me, but he easily convinced me and now it is on the must read again someday list!


They publish such excellent books--I will happily read any that I get through my subscription, which has been a really great investment. I hadn't (or thought I hadn't anyway) heard of him (as a novelist) before getting my book in the mail. So he is going to be one of my great finds of the year.


This one is going straight to the top of my wishlist. I love quiet gems like this! And I think it will resonate very well with me too, as I am also quite prone to entertaining thoughts of setting animals that are in cages/confined areas, free. :) Thanks for the lovely review! And I'm so glad to be able to comment on your blog once again! Thankfully, the technical issues with Typepad seems to have been resolved at last!


Yay! Whatever glitch was going on, I hope it has been solved. So nice to have you visit again and of course I love being able to chat here with you! :) This is a book I will happily press into other readers' hands. It's a great story--the sort that is sort of therapeutic to read actually in its own way. I think all the NYRBs have been great finds--not necessarily quiet gems, but this one certainly was! I need to pick up the next book in line now.


Your paragraph regarding happiness/contentment convinced me to look for this book because that's just how I feel. Turtle Diary sounds so unusual, but it sounds like a book that will really resonate with me, too.


I loved the story--I think I would not have picked it up had it not been one of my subscription books, but I am so glad I did. I think you would like it and hope you look for a copy, too. I am really working on that happiness/contentment thing--of late it has not at all been easy!


I've added Turtle Diary to my TBR list. Thanks for the review and for your blog. Excellent reading!


Wonderful! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! :)

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