2008 - People of the Book
This is a special book. A book about a book. A book about the layered and rich history of a revelatory book. It begins and ends with the story of a modern Australian woman hired to preserve an ancient Jewish text, the Sarajevo Haggadah. Between those chapters the reader is pulled back in time, deeper and deeper into the book's history even as the conservator herself discovers clues to the book's past in the form of tiny stains, an insect wing, a stray hair. It is a story of history and discovery and mystery and loss.
I listened to this book in audiobook format while I was frantically packing up my house for an interstate move. I highly recommend the audio version. The narrator is Australian and lends a plethora of other accents to the characters in the book.
In addition to both audio and hard-copy versions of the text, I was given a set of notes my grandmother took when she read it. The backstory of the Haggadah is complex, and her notes helped immensely. Plus, I love my grandma's handwriting and her doodles.
If you enjoy a book that delves into a history mystery and dissects it bit-by-bit, might I recommend:
- The Chemistry of Tears by Peter Carey
- A Guide for the Perplexed by Dana Horn
- The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
Keep turning the page,