Review: The Book of Speculation

The Book of Speculation





A sweeping and captivating debut novel about a young librarian who is sent a mysterious old book, inscribed with his grandmother’s name. What is the book’s connection to his family?

Simon Watson, a young librarian, lives alone on the Long Island Sound in his family home, a house perched on the edge of a cliff that is slowly crumbling into the sea. His parents are long dead, his mother having drowned in the water his house overlooks.

One day, Simon receives a mysterious book from an antiquarian bookseller; it has been sent to him because it is inscribed with the name Verona Bonn, Simon’s grandmother. Simon must unlock the mysteries of the book, and decode his family history, before fate deals its next deadly hand.

The Book of Speculation is Erika Swyler’s gorgeous and moving debut, a wondrous novel about the power of books, family, and magic.

Rating: 3-stars


The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler held what could have been a fantastic novel. I liked the mysterious of the main character’s family. All the females who can hold their breath for long periods of time under water. They were mermaids. But in present day time, he received  a book with his grandmother’s signature. It led him on a quest about his family and their ‘curse’. Fantasy comes into play here, too. But the whole story just didn’t mash well. I liked it at the beginning until it just washed away completely. The switching back and forth from present to past was a bit flat as well. I wanted to know so much. The action didn’t cut it and the characters were blah. It was more a telling than showing kind of read.

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