The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill follows the adventures of Nina Hill, a self-proclaimed introvert bookworm who has her life sorted. She has her dream job at a bookstore, a winning trivia team and her life is organised to perfection. Nina is happy in her little world and the thought of change terrifies her. However in a short couple of weeks, a series of events has turned Nina’s perfect world upside down.

When a solicitor appears at her bookstore advising her that her estranged father has died, Nina finds out that she has family who live nearby and now must meet. This means talking to strangers, an activity that Nina thoroughly avoids. Nina’s dream job is now feeling like a nightmare as her manager is unable to pay the rent and is considering closing the bookstore. To top it all off, her trivia nemesis is interested in knowing her better outside of trivia competitions. Nina has two options; hide away in her cosy apartment with her bookshelf full of books and her cat Phil or take a chance and break out of her shell.

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill resonated greatly with me. The novel emphasised that even though putting yourself out there and taking a risk is terrifying it can be well worth it. Initially in the first couple of chapters you could believe that Nina is a social butterfly but then you come to realise that all the book clubs and trivia nights are being used as a buffer protecting her from her overwhelming anxiety. I find Nina as a character very relatable; she loves books, and she is perfectly happy with her own company. Throughout the book, Nina’s ability to navigate change matures, and by the end of the book you can see her almost thriving in the unknown. The narration of the novel is humorous and at several points made me laugh out loud. It is a comfortable read and has many literary and pop-culture gems which the observant reader might notice.


The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman
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