Book Review: The Book Charmer

I couldn’t help but choose this book for its title and its cover. Any fellow bibliophile would do the same. THE BOOK CHARMER by Karen Hawkins definitely lived up to its name. If forced to describe it with only one word, charming would be fitting. The town of Dove Pond and all of its quirky residents were easy to fall in love with. It’s so nice to read a book where you actually like all of the characters–where there really isn’t a villain to hate. But maybe that was the reason that I didn’t completely fall for this book–it was almost too sweet.

Books speak to Sarah Dove. As the librarian of the failing small Southern town of Dove Pond, Sarah sees herself as the town’s savoir. The magic is starting to fade from Dove Pond. But when Grace Wheeler arrives with her foster mother, Mama G, and her niece Daisy, Sarah begins to realize that maybe it’s Grace who is meant to turn their town around. The residents of Dove Pond are a family and it will take the love of a family to save the town.

I’ll be honest: I found myself speed-reading through the second half of the book because I had essentially become bored with the characters. There wasn’t much action to speak of which made the story fall flat for me. It is certainly a quick read and at times an enjoyable story, but there are parts of the story and certain characters I found myself wanting more from. It started out so strong and I was excited to see where the story was headed, but ultimately was disappointed.

I liken it to a beautiful cherry pie–it looks and smells delicious and each bite is so sweet, but there isn’t much inside. The inside is a little runny–nothing there to thicken it up. Yes, you’re enjoying the pie, but it isn’t the best pie you’ve ever eaten and your not sure exactly what it is but there’s something missing. For these reasons, I’m giving THE BOOK CHARMER three stars–good but not great, sweet but a little hollow.

Thank you to Net Galley and Gallery Books for the advanced copy of THE BOOK CHARMER by Karen Hawkins in return for my honest review.


THE BOOK CHARMER by Karen Hawkins
Published by Gallery Books, July 30, 2019
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Where I Read: Outside by the pool
Stephenie’s Goodreads Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars

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