From Catherine Given
Author: Nina Sankovitch
Tolstoy and the Purple Chair: my year of magical reading
I just finished Tolstoy and the Purple Chair: My Year of Magical Reading by Nina Sankovitch, about a woman who self-prescribes a book a day for a year as a way to re-group after her beloved sister’s death. It’s a beautifully written story of lessons distilled from 365 authors’ works. By briefly sharing what she derives from the experience and how she applies writers’ messages to her own life, Sankovitch creates a unique memoir, one that any avid reader of books will appreciate. She also provides a list of richly meaningful non-fiction and fiction books to add to our own must-reads. She says:
\”Words are witness to life: They record what has happened and they make it real. . . . Stories about lives remembered bring us backward while allowing us to move forward. The only balm to sorrow is memory: The only salve for the pain of losing someone to death is acknowledging the life that existed before.\”
Tolstoy and the Purple Chair will likely be cherished by anyone mourning the loss of a loved one. For others, it will provide an affirmation of the value of thoughtful reading of good literature.