Well, I think I have now read enough of Geraldine Brook’s work to say that I am truly a fan of her writing. It is always thoughtful and consistent, and often mesmerizing and beautiful. Her novel People of the Book is woven together so wonderfully, combining strong stories from different times, places, and characters.
Hannah Heath’s expertise is in rare and old books, a passion her mother, a renowned neurosurgeon, just can’t comprehend. She is sent to Sarajevo to study the famous Sarajevo Haggadah, a Jewish book filled with detailed illustrations and a war-torn past. The rest of this story follows the history of this book, as it was created and hidden and saved and sought-after for 500 years. While we follow the book’s life, we transverse the history of this part of the world, which has been in turmoil for as long as the book has existed.
People of the Book is expansive in its scope and rich in its details. There are many characters and time periods that interweave, which occasionally proves difficult to follow. We read this one as a book club choice, unfortunately I couldn’t make it that day, but I hear it was well received by the entire group. Fans of Geraldine Brooks will certainly enjoy this novel, but newcomers to her work will also find it to be a solid, exciting, and well-researched novel.