Contemporary, Fiction

The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett

It is rare to come across a book that has a premise that is unlike anything you have ever read. That’s what happened with this novel. It took me by surprise, which of course means I had to read it. So here is my review:

One day, the Queen of England is walking with her dogs when she comes across a travelling library. Although she is polite in her inquiries to the librarian, she cannot help but borrow one of his books. So begins her journey into the world of literature. The Queen is swept up into the world of fiction and cannot seem to put any book down – so much so that her duties and responsibilities begin to fall apart. As court officials try to get the Queen back on track, the Queen continues her journey into the literary world – leading to hilarious consequences.

What a charming book! I love the lightness that is pervasive in this novel and the story is just so cute and funny! I was not bored for a second by it. It helped that it was a short novel and wasn’t too dense. The depiction of the Queen was lovely; it brought her down to our level and made her seem so … normal. By doing this, the novel also showed the generalized way people in society think of members of royalty; it is unfathomable to think of the royal family as having normal passions and desires (this has of course changed these days but it persists to a certain degree). I found this a quaint and quick read, and it is definitely enjoyable so do give it a shot!

Happy reading ~

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