The Bookman’s Tale by Charlie Lovett
Who doesn’t love a book about books? This one was interesting…
The Premise: The story is told in 3 timelines. In timeline #1 we meet Peter Byerly, an antiquarian bookseller, in 1995. He is reentering life after losing his wife. He finds an old book that may prove (or disprove) Shakespeare’s identity and he is trying to authenticate it by tracing its trail of ownership. Timeline #2 is 1983, where we watch Peter fall in love with old books and with Amanda. Timeline #3 starts in 1592, where we witness the ownership trail of the book in question.
The Bookman’s Tale is about a lot more than just books. It contains love, mystery, obsession, forgeries and even murder! I struggled a bit with Timeline #3, because I could not keep track of who all the people were. If I hadn’t been lazy at the time, taking a couple quick notes as I was reading would have been all I needed to cement the names in my brain! However, I felt the characters and the stories in timeline #1 and #2 made up for what I lacked from timeline #3.
If you love history, old books and puzzling out a bookish mystery, The Bookman’s Tale could be perfect for you.