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The Book That Matters Most
by Ann Hood


Overview - Ava's twenty-five-year marriage has fallen apart, and her two grown children are pursuing their own lives outside of the country. Ava joins a book group, not only for her love of reading but also out of sheer desperation for companionship. The group's goal throughout the year is for each member to present the book that matters most to them.  Read more...

 
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More About The Book That Matters Most by Ann Hood
 
 
 
Overview
Ava's twenty-five-year marriage has fallen apart, and her two grown children are pursuing their own lives outside of the country. Ava joins a book group, not only for her love of reading but also out of sheer desperation for companionship. The group's goal throughout the year is for each member to present the book that matters most to them. Ava rediscovers a mysterious book from her childhood--one that helped her through the traumas of the untimely deaths of her sister and mother. Alternating with Ava's story is that of her troubled daughter Maggie, who, living in Paris, descends into a destructive relationship with an older man. Ava's mission to find that book and its enigmatic author takes her on a quest that unravels the secrets of her past and offers her and Maggie the chance to remake their lives.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780393241655
  • ISBN-10: 0393241653
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Publish Date: August 2016
  • Page Count: 368
  • Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Contemporary Women
Books > Fiction > Sagas
Books > Fiction > Family Life

 
BookPage Reviews

Finding a home in a book club

Readers who have ever turned to a book to get out of a slump are going to love Ann Hood’s The Book That Matters Most. The story begins on a festive December night in downtown Providence where Ava, a middle-aged French professor, is feeling anything but festive after discovering her husband’s infidelity. Like a film reel, memories of her once perfect life keep running in her head and no number of martinis can push the stop button. Miles away in Paris, Ava’s daughter, Maggie, is going through a crisis of her own after a failed attempt at writing a novel. Both women are desperate for something to pull them out of their misery.

Ava meets her savior in the form of a book club headed by her librarian friend, Cate, where each member must choose the book that matters most to her for the club to read. Hesitant at first about fitting in and even making the grave mistake of Netflixing her first book, Ava soon finds the comfort she is looking for in the books and the club members.  

With Maggie, on the other hand, Hood takes us on a roller coaster ride through drug addiction, poor choices in men and her desperation to write. She finds a lifeline in a tiny bookstore run by a mysterious and stoic American expat. 

Getting lost and then being found would in itself make for a wonderful story, but Hood adds another layer of complexity, linking the parallel journeys of mother and daughter in an unexpected way. The Book That Matters Most is an engrossing tale that reminds us of the power of the written word to comfort the soul.


ALSO IN BOOKPAGE: Read a Behind the Book feature by Ann Hood on The Book That Matters Most.
 

This article was originally published in the August 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews