I subscribe to EarlyWord, a blog written about the publishing industry for librarians. One day they posted an offer for galleys of Her Fearful Symmetry, and of course I entered. This entry long forgotten, I come home to a package from Simon & Schuster about a week ago. Assuming it’s some galley of something from an unknown author, I open it and then start jumping up and down and calling anyone I could think of who would be able to share the level of excitement I felt for getting to read this book before it is published. On a bit of a tangent, the other nice thing about advanced reader’s copies is that I love trade paperbacks, and that’s basically what they are. So I can read something that I’d only be able to read in hardback for a while right away in paperback.
When I first found out that Audrey Niffenegger would be publishing another novel, I had the apprehension that it would not live up to The Time Traveler’s Wife, which happens to be one of my favorite books of all time. Luckily, that was not the case at all. I loved this novel even more than The Time Traveler’s Wife. I related to the characters so much more, and the setting was very well described. Niffenegger worked at Highgate Cemetery in London to learn about its history and weaved the stories of the cemetery expertly into the novel. The story is about the idea of preserving identity in relationships. It is a beautifully written ghost story with characters that you will love (and some that you won’t). This was one of those novels that I was deeply sorry to turn the last page of and is now on my list of favorite books of all time.
She thanks Neil Gaiman in the acknowledgments, which is funny. He’s another one of my favorite authors who can write a story about a cemetery that I hate to finish.