The power of books and a wicked ghost: The Sentence by Louise Erdrich (book review)

All I knew about this book before reading it was: ghost story, bookseller as main character, shortlisted for Women’s Prize for Fiction 2022. Oh, and it was supposed to be super funny as well! Now, after reading the book, I can say that my initial hypotheses were only a fraction of what The Sentence offers. Let me tell you all about it (no spoilers)!

The Sentence in a nutshell

Tookie, the main character, is a tough cookie 🙂 She is one-of-a-kind – with a troubled past, a weird happening in her teenage years (really weird!), she is now settled for a quieter life as a bookseller. All seems fine, until one of her customers dies and refuses to leave the bookstore. Now, that’s another bizarre situation for Tookie …

The Sentence is a witty and complex story, sprinkled with super funny moments. It’s also about family, communities, and heritage. On top of that, it encompasses challenging times that happened for real, such as the Covid-19 lockdown period and some dark events from Minnesota’s 2019-2020. 

Bookstores during Covid-19 lockdown

From all the challenging moments illustrated in the story, what resonated with me the most was the Covid-19 lockdown and how booksellers managed to keep on going. The situations from the book are super realistic, as the author, Louise Erdrich, owns a bookstore in real life – Birchbark Books 🙂

The moment when bookstores are deemed as “essential” business during pandemic, and therefore allowed to continue their work (in special conditions), is especially emotional. I remember how much I read during the lockdown and how much it helped to keep the sprits high.

The bookstore owned by Louise Erdrich ❤ (snapshot from their website)

A bookish heaven

Set in a bookstore and having books at the center, The Sentence is like a bookish heaven. My book even has books on the cover picture! 📚

You’ll get so many reading ideas from the story – from the discussions that take place in the bookstore, to the clients’ preferences and orders. At the end of the book there’s even a “Totally Biased List of Tookie’s Favourite Books” with 80+ recommendations on ghost-managing, banned love, indigenous history, pandemic reading, and many more. A treasure in itself!


Reading this book was an emotional rollercoaster, from amusement to fury and sadness – that’s always the footprint of an amazing author! It is so much more than just a ghost story – just read it and you’ll discover the depths it’ll take you to 🙂

If you would like to buy this book, please consider using one of these links: Amazon | Waterstones | Carturesti. Thank you!

If you enjoy my content, please consider buying me a coffee by clicking on the button below. It’ll help me be more inspired and write more good-quality content 🙂

‘Till next time … happy reading!


8 thoughts on “The power of books and a wicked ghost: The Sentence by Louise Erdrich (book review)

    1. Super good to know that Love Medicine is worth reading! For me, The Sentence was the first book by Erdrich that I read, so I cannot compare … but I’d love to read more from her, the first experience was amazing!

      Liked by 1 person

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