The BookBrowse Review

Published September 16, 2020

ISSN: 1930-0018

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Contents

In This Edition of
The BookBrowse Review

Highlighting indicates debut books

Editor's Introduction
Reviews
Hardcovers Paperbacks
First Impressions
Latest Author Interviews
Recommended for Book Clubs
Book Discussions

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Publishing Soon

Novels


Historical Fiction


Short Stories/Essays


Poetry


Mysteries


Thrillers


Romance


Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Speculative, Alt. History


Biography/Memoir


History, Science & Current Affairs


Travel & Adventure


Young Adults

Novels


Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Speculative, Alt. History


Extras
  • Blog:
    What To Do When Members Come to Book Club Without Reading the Book?
  • Wordplay:
    L N Take I C
  • Book Giveaway:
    Memorial Drive
    by Natasha Trethewey
Book Jacket

The Left-Handed Booksellers of London
by Garth Nix
22 Sep 2020
416 pages
Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books
ISBN-13: 9780062683250
Genre: Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Speculative, Alt. History
Critics:
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A girl's quest to find her father leads her to an extended family of magical fighting booksellers who police the mythical Old World of England when it intrudes on the modern world. From the bestselling master of teen fantasy, Garth Nix.

In a slightly alternate London in 1983, Susan Arkshaw is looking for her father, a man she has never met. Crime boss Frank Thringley might be able to help her, but Susan doesn't get time to ask Frank any questions before he is turned to dust by the prick of a silver hatpin in the hands of the outrageously attractive Merlin.

Merlin is a young left-handed bookseller (one of the fighting ones), who with the right-handed booksellers (the intellectual ones), are an extended family of magical beings who police the mythic and legendary Old World when it intrudes on the modern world, in addition to running several bookshops.

Susan's search for her father begins with her mother's possibly misremembered or misspelt surnames, a reading room ticket, and a silver cigarette case engraved with something that might be a coat of arms.

Merlin has a quest of his own, to find the Old World entity who used ordinary criminals to kill his mother. As he and his sister, the right-handed bookseller Vivien, tread in the path of a botched or covered-up police investigation from years past, they find this quest strangely overlaps with Susan's. Who or what was her father? Susan, Merlin, and Vivien must find out, as the Old World erupts dangerously into the New.

"Nix builds meta mentions of genre greats into his tale, which marries fey elements and spectacular bookshops with booksellers who wield mystical artifacts, cold steel, and magic. Though the plotting covers well-trod ground, unflappable Susan and wonderfully costumed, magically gender-fluid Merlin make for a fantasy that genre fans, teen or adult, won't want to miss." - Publishers Weekly

"While certain plot elements may be somewhat expected...the broad, immersive world and the specific rules for types of booksellers maintain a sense of discovery...the heroic protagonists, have vibrant, entertaining personalities (and a realistic romantic storyline)...Readers will beg for more adventures in this London." - Kirkus Reviews

"Nix puts in enough twists to make it his own. A remarkable romp through a fantastical new world." - Booklist

"As in his high-fantasy novels, Nix puts a strong, capable, and resourceful young woman front and center within a diverse cast [with] tropes from British spy stories. A thrilling, suspenseful romp with lots of humor and romantic tension; we haven't seen the last of Susan and Merlin." - The Horn Book

"A warm, whimsical delight—The Left-Handed Booksellers of London is a witty, clever adventure in an exquisitely detailed world you will love escaping into." - Veronica Roth, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Divergent series, Carve the Mark series, The End and Other Beginnings, and Chosen Ones

"This is my favorite kind of tale, one where the magic and the real nest together like pages in a book. A delightful read." - V.E. Schwab, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Shades of Magic series and the Monsters of Verity series

Garth Nix has worked as a bookseller, book sales representative, publicist, editor, marketing consultant and literary agent. He also spent five years as a part-time soldier in the Australian Army Reserve. A full-time writer since 2001, more than five million copies of his books have been sold around the world and his work has been translated into 40 languages. Garth's books have appeared on the bestseller lists of the New York Times, Publishers Weekly (US), the Bookseller (UK), the Australian and the Sunday Times (UK). He lives in Sydney, Australia, with his wife and two children

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