Summary and book reviews of Meet Me at the Museum by Anne Youngson

Meet Me at the Museum

by Anne Youngson

Meet Me at the Museum by Anne Youngson X
Meet Me at the Museum by Anne Youngson
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  • First Published:
    Aug 2018, 224 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 2019, 288 pages

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Book Summary

Anne Youngson's Meet Me at the Museum is a celebration of long letters, kindred spirits, and the possibility of writing a new story for yourself, at any stage of life.

Tina and Kristian thought their love stories were over. Each on the other side of 60, they have lost a best friend and a wife, the ambitions of their youth, their hopes for a fresh start. Yearning for connection, they strike up a yearlong correspondence, brought together by a shared fascination with the Tollund Man, subject of Seamus Heaney's famous poem. As they open up to one another about their lives - daily routines, travel, nature, beauty, work, family - these two strangers become friends and then, perhaps, something more.

Full of insight, humor, and candor, Tina and Kristian's letters are a testament to the joy that can come from the meeting of two intensely curious minds.

Excerpt
Meet Me at the Museum

Bury St. Edmunds

November 22


Dear Professor Glob,

Although we have never met, you dedicated a book to me once; to me, thirteen of my schoolmates, and your daughter. This was more than fifty years ago, when I was young. And now I am not. This business, of being no longer young, is occupying much of my mind these days, and I am writing to you to see if you can help me make sense of some of the thoughts that occur to me. Or maybe I am hoping that just writing will make sense of them, because I have little expectation that you will reply. For all I know, you may be dead.

One of these thoughts is about plans never fulfilled. You know what I mean—if you are still alive you must be a very old man by now and it must have occurred to you that what you thought would happen, when you were young, never did. For example, you might have promised yourself you would try a sport or a hobby or an art or a craft. And now you find you have lost the physical dexterity or ...

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Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

Meet Me at the Museum is one of my favorite books of all time (Maureen R). I liked it immensely (Marci G). I recommend it to those who are willing to read at a leisurely and thoughtful pace in order to appreciate each letter (Gail K). I think book clubs would really enjoy this book; it has much to offer and provides much to think about (Patricia W).   (Reviewed by BookBrowse First Impression Reviewers).

Full Review (713 words).

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Media Reviews

Daily Mail (UK)
Already being hailed as a classic…Absolutely beautiful, about loss and the life choices we make.

The Guardian (UK)
What begins as an inquiry about the Tollund Man, and Tina’s thwarted plans to visit the museum, soon develops into a much-valued friendship. As the two enter into detailed discussions about history and archaeology, as well as sharing intimate details about their family lives, the book becomes a thoughtful and gentle meditation on buried passions, regrets, love, grief and loneliness. But Youngson’s debut offers hope for change in its tender exploration of what it means to have experienced a life well-lived.

Kirkus Reviews
Though well-crafted, this genteel novel never quite achieves liftoff.

Author Blurb Annie Barrows, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
A rare pleasure. Warm-hearted, clear-minded, and spellbinding, Meet Me at the Museum has rendered me unfit for all the books I'm supposed to be reading. A novel to savor.

Author Blurb Rachel Joyce, author of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry
A moving tribute to friendship and love, to the courage of the ordinary, and to starting again.

Author Blurb John Boyne, author of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
Tender and wise, Meet Me at the Museum is a novel to cherish.

Reader Reviews

Dorothy

Fascinating Letters
I am completely mesmerized by Meet me at the Museum. I could hardly put the book down--and not because it is a thriller that causes me to turn the pages breathlessly. I wanted to read the next letter and the next letter. The story is one of calm, yet...   Read More

Connie L. (Bartlesville, OK)

Meet Me at the Museum by Anne Youngson
It's fascinating to overhear strangers' conversations. And when they are thoughtful and articulate, it is especially enjoyable. That's what I found in Meet Me at the Museum. In this epistolary novel I became a voyeur, experiencing the unfolding ...   Read More

Jane N. (Little Egg Harbor, NJ)

Meet me at the Museum
I find that when I visit any museum, I like to take my time and savor the exhibits. I found myself doing this while reading this book. As with exhibits, I went back and re read portions to get a better feel for the characters. I was glad I did. The ...   Read More

WDH - Florida

Thoroughly Enjoyed
One of my favorite advance reading copies as a BookBrowse member. The 'Meet Me at the Museum' tag taped to the intro letter was a clever touch. The story is solid and the characters are very well-done. It was lovely to read about adults ...   Read More

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Beyond the Book

Tollund Man

Tollund Man bog body on display at Silkeborg Museum in Denmark Anne Youngson's debut work, Meet Me at the Museum is an epistolary novel consisting of letters between a farm wife living in England and a Danish museum curator. The correspondence begins when she writes to inquire about Tollund Man.

The naturally mummified corpse known as Tollund Man (so named because he was found close to the small village of Tollund in Denmark) was discovered in 1950 by workers cutting peat for fuel. The body looked so lifelike they thought the remains were of a recent murder victim, and after some discussion, they summoned the local police. Puzzled, the authorities brought in P.V. Glob, an archaeologist from nearby Sikleborg, who determined the body was at least 2,000 years old. Glob went on to study other similarly...

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