My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - 1 day
Pages - 195
Publisher - Pan MacMillan
Source - Review Copy
Blurb from Goodreads
An irresistible French sensation - Mr Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore meets Amelie - The Reader on the 6.27 explores the power of books through the lives of the people they save. It is sure to capture the hearts of book lovers everywhere. Guylain Vignolles lives on the edge of existence. Working at a job he hates, he has but one pleasure in life ...Sitting on the 6.27 train each day, Guylain reads aloud. And it's this release of words into the world that starts our hero on a journey that will finally bring meaning into his life. For one morning, Guylain discovers the diary of a lonely young woman: Julie. A woman who feels as lost in the world as he does. As he reads from these pages to a rapt audience, Guylain finds himself falling hopelessly in love with their enchanting author ...
The Reader on the 6.27 is a tale bursting with larger-than-life characters, each of whom touches Guylain's life for the better. This captivating novel is a warm, funny fable about literature's power to uplift even the most downtrodden of lives. 'The humanity of the characters ...the re-enchantment of everyday life, the power of words and literature, tenderness and humour ...
Guylain Vignolles travels into Paris, on the 6.27 train to head to a job he hates, pulping hundreds/thousands of books daily. He manages to save a few random pages each times and uses them to read aloud to the passengers, from the same seat, everyday.
The book is really quite different to anything I have read, not exactly sure how to describe it or what genre I would slip it into. Guylain isn't happy in his life, the machine at work is dangerous and has already claimed limbs of a previous worker which sees the story go down a different vein. We see the impact Guylain has on some of his fellow commuters and the impact literature has on the characters involved in the story. Then Guylain finds a diary, of a real person and opens the story up in to a different direction and gives him some purpose and focus, bringing us a new character.
It is certainly different and some people have loved this book, I think for some it is a special wee read that brings different things to different people. Some of the characters are very lonely, isolated and it is lovely how random readings and a diary bring them into each others lives. It has humour, sadness, relationships and some good shining moments on the nicer aspects of humanity through small gestures with big impact. 3/5 for me this time, this was my first time reading this author, I would read him again.
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