“Lessons in Chemistry” Book Review

There are so many cliches that I want to say when describing my love for this book: I laughed and I cried, I fell in love with the characters, I didn’t want it to end. But this book deserves so much more than tired book review language. It’s heartwarming, hysterical, thought-provoking, and inspiring. It’s everything I crave in a well-written book that I know will stay with me for a long time.

I almost didn’t give this book a chance based on its cover (it looked like a chick lit book to me, a genre I’m not a huge fan of). But then I kept seeing five-star reviews pop up and I got intrigued. I’m so grateful that I dove in, and now I feel compelled to spread the word about what a treasure this book is.

Garmus has crafted a truly memorable main character in Elizabeth Zott. She’s a brilliant chemist in the 1950s when not many women had positions in the field. She’s brutally honest, driven, and a survivor in every sense of the word. When she meets famous chemist Calvin Evans in her lab, she truly learns a thing or two about chemistry (their connection is undeniable). I won’t go into more of the plot because the best parts were surprises. But Garmus has imagined a whole cast of characters that flew off the page and into my heart. There were several twists I didn’t see coming, and I’ll admit a few parts where I cried real tears (not easy for a book to make me do).

There was so much cleverness in this book and loose ends that got tied up in beautiful knots by the novel’s last chapter. As a writer, I’m astonished that this is Garmus’ debut novel and insanely jealous that someone has this much storytelling talent. I eagerly await what she writes next, but I have a hard time believing anything will touch me as much as this one did. Please, please go read it!

5 stars

*Free ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review*

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