Tolstoy and the purple chair - Sankovitch, Nina
Summary: Torn apart by grief after losing her sister, the author, a 46-year-old mother of four, turned to literature for comfort, devoting herself to reading one book a day for a year, which brought much needed joy, healing and wisdom into her life. 30,000 first printing. - (Baker & Taylor)
Reading was paramount in Sankovitch's Evanston, Illinois, home, so she turned to books for solace in the wake of her oldest sister's cruel death at age 46. While Sankovitch knew she could rely on books "for wisdom, for succor, and for escape," however, she realized that as the mother of four sons, and as an attorney on hiatus, she needed structure to cope with her grief. Hence her "book-a-day project." Nestled in her beloved old purple chair, Sankovitch read a book each day, primarily novels, then reviewed each title on her book-exchange website, Read All Day. She now recounts her "year of magical reading" in a beautifully fluid, reflective, and astute memoir that gracefully combines affecting family history––her parents immigrated to America after surviving WWII in Belgium and Poland—with expert testimony about how books open our minds to "the complexity and entirety of the human experience." Sankovitch's reading list in all its dazzling variety is top-notch, and every ardent reader will find her perceptive thoughts about stories, remembrance, resilience, and "book bliss" incisive and affirming. Copyright 2011 Booklist Reviews.