Read advance reader review of The Book That Matters Most by Ann Hood, page 4 of 7

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The Book That Matters Most

A Novel

by Ann Hood

The Book That Matters Most by Ann Hood X
The Book That Matters Most by Ann Hood
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Aug 2016, 288 pages

    Aug 2017, 368 pages


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There are currently 46 member reviews
for The Book That Matters Most
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  • Lisa G. (Wheeling, IL)
    The Book that Matters Most
    I identified with the main character Ava when she became the newest member of a book group that had been in existence for a long time. The fact that one of the members picked my favorite book as the one she wanted to review made me even more excited. Both mother and daughter were disappointed in their relationships and trying to forge new ones, making many missteps along the way. The ending was somewhat predictable but overall I found this an easy and enjoyable read. I would recommend it to book groups.
  • Portia A. (Monroe Township, NJ)
    A book perfect for a book club
    Any book that makes you think is worth reading.
    What is your choice for the book that matters most to you? Why? What would you do if your world fell apart?
    A story of friendships, sadness and sometimes harsh reality, but with a hope for better things. I recommend it.
  • Beth P. (Rensselaer, NY)
    This book will matter to you!
    I remember being a child, having the luxury of reading a book in one sitting, devouring it as you would a favorite meal. In adulthood we rarely get that opportunity, too many things to do, places to be, it just doesn't happen. Yet, here I am, stuck on a couch while doctors try and figure out why my hip is hurting. So, when this book arrived in the mail, I started reading in the morning and to my astonishment, read the last page that very afternoon. I could not put it down. I am a huge Ann Hood fan, so I expected to like it, the title drawing me in right away, "The Book That Matters Most". Books have always mattered to me, was this one going to matter to me? Within minutes, I found myself caring about her characters, wanting to know more about this book club that meets once a month. Each of its members was to pick the book that mattered most to them. The novel zeroed in on two central characters, and explored the themes of "love, loss, regret and redemption". A mother and her daughter, a wife and a husband, regrets of the past and a yearning to know the future. I adored this book, I treasure this book, it woke up every sense I had, leaving me sad when finishing it, only because I loved reading it so much and now I was done. I cannot praise this book enough, it will always matter to me.
  • Amanda A. (Inman, SC)
    The Book That Matters Most by Ann Hood
    I enjoyed this heartwarming story of family relationships and the impact books can have on readers. I loved the book club's theme to choose the book that matters most to you. It challenged me to think of what book I would choose. This would be a great book for book clubs. The characters are engaging and there were a couple of twists that kept my interest. This was the first book by Ann Hood that I have read and I will definitely look for more of her books.
  • Patricia L. (Seward, AK)
    Prose that Flows…
    Ava, recently divorced mother of two adult children is "desperate to fill her empty hours." A long awaited invitation to join her friend Cate's book club results in making a promise she has no idea how to she will keep. The author introduces additional baggage for Ava through her daughter Maggie, a young woman trying to write the great American novel by following Hemingway's footsteps through Paris yet only succeeding in copying his addictive and destructive ways. From tragic accidents, love affairs past and present, mysterious disappearances and slightly unbelievable circumstances Hood uses literary references radiating from the book club's selections to move her plot and characters.
    Reading this novel felt like floating down a stream. There are rapids that deal with drugs, suicide and divorce amid ripples of memories and remorse. Hood has a gift of expertly inserting innuendo and intrigue peaking anticipation of either a falls or calm water. Yet at the end of the journey the fastidious tying up of all the loose ends felt almost too complete; unreal at times. While The Book that Matters Most is not America's greatest novel, there is a lot about those tomes to be learned within it. And reading it is not as great a chore as reading Moby Dick. Recommended as a fast enjoyable read for summer days or winter evenings.
  • Barbara L. (Novato, CA)
    The power of grief
    I always wonder if Ann Hood has had personal experience dealing with grief. As a widow myself, I find that her writing on the subject is right on.

    This novel centers around the topic of loss and grief, not only as the result of death. But it also is all about the love of books and the profound impact they can have on us! How books help us heal and grow and understand life's mysteries.
    I really liked this book and would highly recommend it to book clubs everywhere,
  • Sally H. (Geneva, OH)
    The Book that Matters Most
    I'd give this book four and a half stars. It was a slow starter for me, but after I got into it a bit, the book grabbed me and I couldn't put it down. Although I'm glad that the book club I lead isn't organized the way the one in this book is, there were some wonderful insights on great books (and suggestions for reading lists) that could be useful to book groups. Ava's character grows and matures throughout the book, as does that of her daughter, Maggie. This novel has a mystery element and a somewhat surprising ending. I would recommend it, especially for book clubs.

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