Title: The Midnight Library
Author: Matt Haig
Publisher: Canongate Books
Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. While we all wonder how our lives might have been, what if you had the chance to go to the library and see for yourself? Would any of these other lives truly be better?
I had heard so many people raving about The Midnight Library, so I thought I would give it a go. I really liked the concept but found that it didn’t get me as emotional as I thought it would.
I found the main character of Nora to be a little bit annoying at points, and that did detract from my enjoyment. She would do certain things that had me rolling my eyes and kept pulling me out of the story. I did also find myself getting second-hand embarrassment which was making me cringe at certain points. I think this is why I didn’t feel as emotionally connected to the story as I thought I would heading into it. We did see other characters I liked, and it was interesting to see how they changed across the book’s length.
The concept of The Midnight Library is something that I am familiar with, so I found it really interesting to see it play out on the page. It is full of questions that we always have after we’ve made a decision, so it is strange to imagine what could happen if you said yes instead of no to a question. I also liked all of the technical information present within the book, as I think it added to my understanding and made it feel a bit more accurate, and I could imagine that this is something that exists.
The Midnight Library is my first Matt Haig book, and I really enjoyed his writing style. I felt that it flowed nicely, and the story never felt too stagnant. Another thing that I loved was the short chapters. I think this really helped with the pacing of the book, especially as it is so short.
I will definitely be picking up another Matt Haig book in the future because the concepts as something that I have not seen before and sound really interesting.