#bookreview The Midnight Library by Matt Haig published by Canongate


Between life and death there is a library.

When Nora Seed finds herself in the Midnight Library, she has a chance to make things right. Up until now, her life has been full of misery and regret. She feels she has let everyone down, including herself. But things are about to change.

The books in the Midnight Library enable Nora to live as if she had done things differently. With the help of an old friend, she can now undo every one of her regrets as she tries to work out her perfect life. But things aren’t always what she imagined they’d be, and soon her choices place the library and herself in extreme danger.

Before time runs out, she must answer the ultimate question: what is the best way to live?

My reading experience:

What if you had the chance to see how your life could have been if you’d made alternative choices? What if you had the chance to undo your regrets? What if those daydreams about another life could come true?

This is no ‘sliding doors’ story, this is a well researched, theorised story based on philosophy and driven by mindfulness.

“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see” ~ Henry David Thoreau

As a reader the story is thought provoking. The reader may start off thinking about how great it would be to wipe away all regrets but quickly realises that life is about perspective. Life is about finding the best way to live to love yourself.

So our downbeat protagonist Nora finds herself in the Midnight Library, that space between life and death where all other life pathways can be seen for what they would’ve been between the pages of infinite shelves of books. Nora has always felt that the grass would be greener, that her life would’ve been better if she’d said yes instead of no etc etc. Nora has never found herself, never found what nourishes her soul, she has only ever seen and felt fear. Recently I have watched motivational talks and there is a particular one where the speaker talks about happiness being on the other side of that fear. I would have to agree.

Life begins on the other side of despair”~ Jean-Paul Sartre

Does Nora find the life she wants amongst all of the variations she gets to try?

I highly recommend this book – what are you waiting for!


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