The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper


When we were out West I kept seeing this book in all of the little shops in all of the small towns we drove through and eventually at Powell's in Portland-which if you're a bibliophile, you've found your heaven. So many floors. So many rooms. Powell's is really well organized and curated-I could have stayed for days. Anywho, the cover of the book kept catching my eye and after reading the inside cover, it got pushed to the top of my list.

Rather than buy the book (which I know, I usually do support small, local shops), I opted to rent it from the library on my Kindle. I LOVE our local library's e-book selection and not too surpisingly, they had it but I had to wait a few days for it to become available.

This book is about an old-ish man named Arthur Pepper. His wife, Miriam, dies and after a year of mourning, he decides it's time to clear out her things. In her typically bland wardrobe, he finds an intricate box containing a charm bracelet, far more fancy than Miriam would typically would have worn. He starts to investigate each charm-where they came from, what they had meant in relation to his wife and her life before him. And throughout his travels making these discoveries, Arthur realizes quite a bit about himself, as well.


I really enjoyed this book. It's engaging and emotional but not overly so-you won't find yourself sobbing necessarily but you might find yourself misty-eyed. It makes you think about your life and how relationships have changed over the years. Before Facebook and Tinder and all of the other trash out there that clouds and skews your judgement, the world was a smaller place with a much more (seemingly) finite group of people to choose from when it came to marriage. Arthur recognizes that the times have changed but it's really moving to see that regardless of how many fish are in the sea, given the choice again, Arthur would still and always would, choose Miriam.

I don't know if I would say this is one of my favorite books I've ever read but I'm definitely glad I read it.

Have you read it? Do you have any recommendations for me?! I'm ALWAYS looking for new reading material. Don't forget to follow me on Goodreads @RachelBaird ! 

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