On the Shelf: Her Fearful Symmetry

Curling up with a good book has always been one of the simple pleasures I enjoy most on a cold winter night (of which we’ve had many lately!). I tend toward contemporary women’s fiction and, as you may have noticed if you’ve read my blog on a regular basis, I especially like stories that are a bit different. The book that’s been keeping me company the past few evenings – Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger – is no exception.

Niffenegger came to my attention when her bestselling novel, The Time Traveler’s Wife, began to cross the Kingwood Branch Library circulation desk on a regular basis. Intrigued by the book’s storyline, I bought a paperback copy, but because it’s a long book that I’ll need lots of time to read, I’ve been saving it to “take with” on my next vacation.
 
Her Fearful Symmetry also offered an intriguing storyline, and since I knew I’d be able to read the book in a reasonable amount of time (only 401 pages!), I put my name of the library’s request list. With perfect timing, my copy arrived shortly before Christmas, and I immediately dug into it.
 
Her Fearful Symmetry is a ghost story – one of the most original and more believable (although not very scary) ghost stories I’ve ever read. But it is also a love story, a story of sisters and secrets, and of one spirit’s determination to hang onto life at any cost.  The plot twists presented in the final third of the book kept me turning pages long past my bedtime, especially last night, and the final scene did not disappoint.
 
In Niffenegger, I have once again found a writer’s writer, a master of plot and characterization, and – lucky me! – I still have The Time Traveler’s Wife waiting to be read.
 
Have you been blown away lately by the writing skill of a new-to-you author? Let me know!