Black Rose Writing

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By Marydale Stewart

IR Rating:
THE BOOK FIX is a pleasantly readable, thoughtfully-presented story with a good heart and a satisfying ending.

A librarian in a little town is faced with an effort to censor his book selections, and must choose between his conscience and his job.

Adam Antonetti is head librarian at the Linden Grove Public Library, and he and assistant librarian Olivia Zutkowski have built a solid collection, and an affectionate working relationship that Olivia rather wishes would turn into something more. But when conservative religious members of the library’s board attempt to censor books on abortion and non-heterosexual sexual orientations, Adam has to choose between his dedication to a library’s freedom of expression and his secure, comfortable job  – and to make matters more difficult, he’s also had his niece’s expensive but sweet Arabian horse Huriya pushed into his care. Can he protect the library’s independence while retaining his own livelihood, finding a home for Huriya, and maybe finding love for himself into the bargain?

THE BOOK FIX is a heartwarming story with a cozy small-town feel, that doesn’t shrink from the ways in which a small town can feel both comforting and suffocating at the same time. The characters are generally quite well-drawn, human and likable, and it’s not hard to get emotionally invested in their stories and wish them well. It helps that the author does not fall prey to the temptation to make the antagonists of the piece into one-dimensional villains – the board president, Fred Vortman, is a decent human being at heart, who cares very much for his family and town, and is firmly convinced that he’s doing the right and moral thing by asking for certain books to be removed.

THE BOOK FIX is the literary equivalent of comfort food – it’s a gentle, warmhearted, soothing story, suitable for a pleasant diversion after a difficult day, perhaps. This has its down side as well – the conflicts are a bit too easily resolved for the story to have a really substantive feel to it, and the astute reader will be able to predict the story’s direction rather easily in places. At times, too, the book feels somewhat preachy, its moral and political agenda being pushed rather unsubtly at the reader. However, it retains a substantive amount of genial charm, and serves its purpose admirably.

THE BOOK FIX is a pleasantly readable, thoughtfully-presented story with a good heart and a satisfying ending.

~Catherine Langrehr for IndieReader