The Book of Form and Emptiness
“Im still rereading sentences pondering and listening to the voices. I've never even remotely read anything like this before....Hats off to Ruth Ozeki!”Jayne, Mystery to Me
“Ruth Ozeki is back with a beautiful portrayal of the life of young teen Benny who is in the throes of grief at the loss of his beloved father. It has been a year since that loss but now Benny is living with his mother who has begun to hoard things, and he is starting to hear them speak to him. The voices are sometimes little more than a feeling – contentment, softness, or anger and frustration. When those voices follow him into the world outside, he really begins to worry. He flees to a place of safety – the library – where things are quieter. Then he begins to meet interesting people and learns how to find his own path in life and move forward. You’ll love the unknown narrator – Book – and the telling of this tale. The Book of Form and Emptiness is sparkling with Love and Truth – two things we all really need right now. And in the hands of such a consummate writer, they are powerfully rendered. Enjoy!”Linda, Auntie's Bookstore
“What I love most about Ruth Ozeki's writing is that it's different every time. You get some of the same vibe but her storylines are vast and unpredictable and you never know what you are getting into, but it will be good and 100% worth your time! The Book of Form and Emptiness started off bizarre but sucked me in so fast and then made me slow down to absorb every single word. It was almost meta with one of its main voices, a Book, and hit hard with its deep dive into mental illness. Parts of this book skewed a little Murakami in tone but coming from someone who doesn't always love Murakami, there is something so human and relatable in Ozeki's writing that separates her a little. Benny lives alone with his mother Annabelle after losing his father in a terrible accident a few years previous. Plagued by the voices of inanimate objects around him, Benny struggle with his mental health throughout the novel. In part narrated by one of his voices, an omnipresent Book, whom Benny first encounters at an abandoned Bindery at his local library. The Book tells us the story of Benny and Annabelle through a third party lens. We encounter a fun cast of characters from Benny's adventures who all band together to help this family get through a tough time. Truly a magical reading experience that is full of heart, Ozeki's newest work is a must read for fans of literary fiction.”Kimi, Buttonwood Books and Toys
“Completely original, this is the story of Benny and Annabelle, son and mother, dealing with tragic loss in their own unique ways. The narrator is The Book, and objects in Benny's life are given voices to tell their own stories. The novel takes an innovative and magical realist look at hoarding, depression, mental illness, homelessness, climate change, and the interconnections of all things.”Keith, Politics & Prose
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