Skip to content

Today's Hours: Mon: 9 am – 9 pm

View Hours

Mon – Thu: 9 am – 9 pm
Fri: 9 am – 6 pm
Sat: 9 am – 5 pm
Sun: 12 – 5 pm

View Closures

Amy’s Pick of the Week: Fourteen Days by Margaret Atwood and Douglas Preston

The book cover of Fourteen DaysIt has often been noted that humanity comes together during times of crisis. Perhaps you have experienced this in your own life. 

The two weeks from March 30th through April 13th, 2020 were difficult days for people all throughout the United States, but especially for New Yorkers. Case numbers of COVID-19 infections and deaths in the city grew higher than in entire countries. 

But people worked together to stay six feet apart, stay home, to quarantine and isolate.  

Fourteen Days, edited and contributed to by Margaret Atwood and Douglas Preston, tells the story of the residents of a Manhattan apartment building. They meet up at a safe distance on their rooftop to cheer for medical workers each night at 7pm. There they remain for an hour or so, with beverages and music, to share stories and each other’s company before returning to the isolation of their apartments.  

The stories they tell each other might have happened to the storyteller, but could have been just stories they had heard. Some are fun, some are heartfelt, some are unnerving. They sometimes reveal something about the one speaking– or they might just leave the audience guessing about the point the story teller wants to make. 

As the novel moves forward, the sense of community among those on the rooftop builds and it feels as if something new is created. 

What is particularly interesting about this novel is that not only is it about unlikely people forming community during a pandemic, but 36 different authors drew together to write this book. And, because the identity of which author wrote which piece is not revealed until the end of the book, there is some joy in trying to figure out who wrote what. Some of the authors include Diana Gabaldon, John Grisham, Maria Hinojosa, Erica Jong, Celeste Ng, R.L. Stine, and Luis Alberto Urrea. It’s an eclectic group! 

As often happens with books of short stories, some are stronger or more interesting than others. But the framework of the book – with a main character who narrates each day, and the curiosity of what the next story would bring – keeps the novel moving forward and helps answer some questions while bringing about new ones. 

This is an entertaining and heartfelt read that I recommend for those who enjoy stories, are fans of any of these authors, or who would like to read about people becoming community. 

Categories: Books and More

Tags: Books and More

Cook Memorial Public Library District

Install Cook Memorial Public Library District

Install this application on your home screen for quick and easy access when you’re on the go.

Just tap then “Add to Home Screen”