A review by octavia_cade
A Bookshop in Algiers by Kaouther Adimi

informative sad medium-paced


I wanted to like this more than I did - the cover's so gorgeous, and I always like books about books. This one has a particularly interesting structure, bouncing between contemporary events and historical record in the form of journal entries, and I understand from the author's note at the back that a lot of this is based on actual fact (not entirely surprising, given all the references to various writers and their lives and publishing relationships scattered through the pages). Adimi spent a year sifting through archives for documented material, and it shows. 

It shows a little too much, perhaps. I'm left feeling that this rather fragmented narrative, which is honestly quite sparse in places, works more for me as a teaser for an actual history book. I'd read that book! In fact, it makes me want to go and find a biography on Edmond Charlot. I'll add it to the list...