She didn’t want to live any other life than the one that was hers. The one that could be a messy struggle, but it was her messy struggle. A beautiful messy struggle.the midnight library by matt haig
Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. While we all wonder how our lives might have been, what if you had the chance to go to the library and see for yourself? Would any of these other lives truly be better?
In The Midnight Library, Matt Haig’s enchanting new novel, Nora Seed finds herself faced with this decision. Faced with the possibility of changing her life for a new one, following a different career, undoing old breakups, realizing her dreams of becoming a glaciologist; she must search within herself as she travels through the Midnight Library to decide what is truly fulfilling in life, and what makes it worth living in the first place.
Oh my. I don’t even know how to begin talking about this book. I was instantly intrigued by the synopsis after seeing this book around instagram for a while and I just couldn’t delay it any longer and had to finally pick it up. I had never read anything by Matt Haig but I can now safely say that I want to read everything he has ever written.
Sometimes we come along certain books that leave a big mark on us, that impact us in a way we didn’t even know we needed, and this book really got to me. I wanted to devour it in one go, but also savour it for as long as possible. In the end I had to compromise and read it in two days 😅 what can I say, I really could not stop thinking about this story.
In this particular book Haig dives into the whole concept of how different our lives could have been like if we had made different decisions, and he does so in such a simple and gripping way that I knew I had a new favourite in my hands right from the very beginning. We follow along Nora Seed as she discovers the possibility of choosing a different life for herself, a life that she would feel was perfect for her, a life of no regrets. And what an amazing character Nora is. I love her so so much! Her intelligence, her potential, her struggles, her kindness, she really is a force to be reckoned with. But most importantly to get to see her heal and grow and understand just how strong she is…that really got to me. I am really not going to go too deep into the story itself because this is the type of book you should go into without knowing too much. This is a book you should really get absorbed in.
But I need to talk about how powerful this story is. This is a story about life. Or better yet what makes life worth living. What makes a life good? Is it not having any regrets? And what constitutes a regret? Are regrets based on our own unachieved dreams and expectations or on the expectations other people have of us? How can you feel real happiness? And is happiness the only goal to reach for in life? And this is also a story about learning to love yourself. Learning to see how much potential you truly have. Learning how to believe in yourself and just take the next step.
This book made me think so so much, and I love it when a book does that. I love it when a story digs so deep into your chest and then helps you fill all that open space with hope and understanding. In fact that’s one thing that this book really provides: understanding. We are all different people, living different lives, we have our own struggles and victories and yet somehow there are stories out there that speak a universal language. Stories that feel like a warm hug, like a beacon of hope. I am always in awe of people that can speak this language, that can translate such complicated and complex feelings in a way that makes us understand that they were never the problem in the first place, but the solution. That our mental health is always the most important thing. That none of us is alone. And Matt Haig deserves all the congratulations this world has to give for giving us this necessary warm hug.
I honestly have been sitting in front of my computer, writing and rewriting this, for so long now. I have SO many thoughts and feelings concerning this book and I am not even sure I have all the words necessary to express them. And even if I did, the space here wouldn’t be enough to really talk about all of it. I would end up just copying and pasting the entire book in a blog post because that’s how exquisite it truly is. I don’t think I have ever had so much to say and end up not being able to put it in words. All I know is that stories like this, the ones that fill us with hope and that bittersweet, oh so real, humbling feeling, these are the stories I live for. I cannot recommend this book enough. It is a favourite of mine now.