Author(s): Nina Sankovitch
"Words are alive and literature becomes an escape, not from, but into living." (Cyril Connolly). After the death of her sister, Nina Sankovitch found herself caught up in grief, dashing from one activity to the next to keep her mind occupied. But on her forty-sixth birthday she decided to stop running and start reading. For once in her life she would put all other obligations on hold-a husband, four kids, three cats, and piles of dirty laundry would have to wait. Instead, she would devote herself to reading a book a day: one year of magical reading in which she found joy, healing, and wisdom. With grace and deep insight, Sankovitch weaves together poignant memories from her family's history with the unforgettable lives of the characters she reads about. She finds a lesson to be learned in each book, ultimately realizing the ability of a good story to console, inspire, and open our lives to new places and experiences - reading as therapy. In an era when we are constantly bombarded by technology and instant gratification is the norm, "Tolstoy and the Purple Chair" is a reminder of the wisdom to be found in books and proof of the all-encompassing power and delight of reading. Thoughtful, accessible, and moving, this book will touch the bibliophile in all of us.
"Tolstoy and the Purple Chair masterfully weaves beloved and sometimes surprising books into central events in the writer's life. There is much to learn from this moving book. Sankovitch writes with intelligence and honesty, leading us to respond in a similar manner."--Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, author of One Amazing Thing
Nina Sankovitch was born in Evanston, Illinois to immigrant parents, the youngest of three girls. She graduated from Tufts University with a B.A. in History and Spanish, and then went straight to Harvard Law School. She has worked as a corporate lawyer, a coastal attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council, and became Executive Director of Save the Sound in 2003. In 2008 Nina launched ReadAllDay.org, and at the end of her year of reading she was profiled in the New York Times. She now reviews books on a regular basis for the Huffington Post. She lives in Connecticut with her husband and four sons.