Wednesday, January 26, 2022

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

Page one: 
 " Between life and death there is a library," she said. "And within that library, the shelves go on forever. Every book provides the chance to try another life you could have lived. To see how things would have been if you'd made other choices....Would you have done anything different, if you had a chance to undo your regrets?"

Nora Seed is an extremely intelligent young woman but she is very depressed.  Life didn't turn out as she thought  and she decides to end her life.  She "wakes up" in a library at midnight and the librarian from her childhood school is there.  The librarian was always kind to her and becomes her guide assisting with choices.

There is a book of regrets she has Nora read through and the more she reads, the more upset she becomes.  Now she has a chance to drop in on a life she regrets losing.  Perhaps that will be the perfect life for Nora.  You don't go back in time but join the life you would have if you'd taken that path.  

Nora wishes she'd married Dan and pursued his dream of opening a pub in the English countryside. She visits many lives she could have had because each choice we make in life would take us on a different path.  She can become the olympic swimmer, a married woman with children, a successful musician, a dog walker and it goes on and on.

It's not the type of book I had thought it would be and yet I was loving every single chapter.  This is a marvelous book and reminds you the grass isn't always greener.  No life choice is perfect and you aren't guaranteed of smooth sailing with zero heart ache.

It turned out well, loved the ending chapters and I can recommend this book as a very enjoyable read.  It's emotional and uplifting.

Sharing with Joy's Book Blog for British Isles Friday. as it's set in England. Author Matt Haig is an English novelist.

Note: Netgalley provided me with a bookclub kit for this book.  Alas, I wasn't able to view the kit/verbage as it was "faded" - can't think of another way to describe it.  Couldn't see it. 


  1. Great review! I'm #4 on a waiting list at my library for the audio.

  2. Great review! I've been on the fence with this one. Sounds a little different from my typical reads. My sister doesn't think I'll like it, but I may just borrow it from the library and see...

  3. I'm on the fence about reading this one. The concept hurts my brain a little! It does sound wonderful though so I'm going to have to see if I can get it on audio.

  4. Great review. I enjoyed this book too. You should check out Being Erica (TV series), as it has a similar feel.

  5. Now on a very long library wait list - will give it a go. thanks

  6. That sounds really unusual, but I like the concept.


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