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Summary

An irresistible French sensation - Mr Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore meets Amélie.

The Reader on the 6.27 explores the power of books through the lives of the people they save. It is sure to capture the hearts of book lovers everywhere.

Guylain Vignolles leads a dull and solitary life. He hates his job, and his only company at home is a goldfish. Every morning he takes the 6.27 to his tedious job at a book pulping factory. He hates his boss and his assistant, but he finds companionship with the factory's guard, an eccentric aficionado of classical literature.

On the train each morning on the way to work, Guylain reads aloud to his fellow commuters the disparate pages that he rescues from the jaws of the monstrous pulping machine. One morning on the train, he finds a USB stick which contains the diary of a young woman. As Guylain reads the diary, he finds himself falling love with its author....

This enchanting novel is a warm and funny fable about literature's power to uplift even the most monotonous of lives and how there can be dignity and poetry for even the most misunderstood.

©2014 Jean-Paul Didierlaurent (P)2015 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Charming French Fairytale

Spotted this in a train station as the book of the week, and glad I remembered to look it up on here. Deliciously narrated, Stephane Cornicard's voice is truly 'ear candy', and that makes this an audiobook worth purchasing over just reading the book.
This touching Paris-set vignette is highly reminiscent of the likes of Amelie: quirky, pleasant characters you cheer for because you recognise in them the basic human desire to be happy and fulfilled, and relate to their struggles along the way. It's the kind of story that finds humour, warmth and charm in the most basic, mundane everyday occurrences, and champions the dispossessed, where equally lonely and stubborn souls form habitual friendship groups that grudgingly, sometimes unknowingly, provide all the support they need to keep them afloat - gives us all hope, eh?
Like one of Aunt's sugar puffs, this is 'a little sweet, with no other pretension than quite simply to be eaten': enjoy! (Word to the wise, if you're at all queasy about bathroom functions, then maybe proceed with caution?!)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Sublime - both writing and narration

A delightful short read. Beautiful narration - that enhanced the book. Almost a fairy tale but filled with rounded and delightful characters. Celebrating the depth and richness of every day life.

The followup book is read by someone else and I so enjoyed this one (consumed in one sitting this morning) that I feel I'll need to wait a little before listening to it. As having a different narrator just won't be the same.

This is a magical book and one I'll be sharing with lots of people.

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The occasional misread

A fun, quirky story and I really like Cornicard’s accent. The subtle way he changed his voice for Julie and the old ladies was nice, too.

Due to reading difficulties, I read and listen at the same time and I did find a few small errors here and there: some misread words and unintoned questions. I found myself doing a double-take ever now and then but really no big deal!

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Beautiful, touching and amusing

If you described the plot of this book to anyone, it would seem a little strange but the entire narrative wends its way to a beautiful, funny and touching narrative. The French narration only added to its beauty.

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Favourite

My favourite ever book. Simple. Have to write 11 more words. 4 more words now:

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  • Sharon Riddick Groppi
  • 14-07-16

Beautifully written - and performed flawlessly!

Any additional comments?

This book is all about books, words and overall the magic that language and literature easily bring into our own somewhat colorless lives. The language of this book is carefully used and placed just as notes on a symphony and the result is mesmerizing. Yes, the plot is nice and the story is cute and easy and definitely uplifting, but the language is the great protagonist of this book - and Mr. Cornicard's narration gives it absolute justice. Such a treat to the ears :)

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Profile Image for nicholas
  • nicholas
  • 05-02-16

A man, a train, a journal.

Never have those three things been so enthralling, charming, or magical all in one book. Very good story. Give it a listen.

The narrator does an astounding job and adds to the French flavor of this story being that Stephen is himself, French.

Again, give a listen. Perhaps on a rainy day with some tea or, on a train ride :)