Unlikely Animals by Annie Hartnett is one of the quirkiest books I have read in quite awhile and I absolutely loved it! I went into this one blind, and I highly recommend you do the same. There is no way a synopsis can fully encompass all this book has to offer. Just trust me on this. I did not expect what I got, but that made it all the more sweeter. I have only had one other book obsession this year and now I can say I have two, because Unlikely Animals is a solid five star for me.
(From Goodreads) A lost young woman returns to small-town New Hampshire under the strangest of circumstances in this one-of-a-kind novel of life, death, and whatever comes after.
I straight up adored this book. The characters are quirky and loveable, and I was so into how the story incorporates actual historical figures and places, as well as animals and residents of the local graveyard (Is that the nice way to say 'ghosts'?) The past residents of this small New Hampshire town are like the Greek chorus that narrates Emma's story and the intermingled chapters with writings from the long-dead naturalist, Ernest Harold Baynes, add such a great element to the story. I love a story with unlikeable-likeable characters and that is exactly what you get with this one. This quote describes it all, "Both funny and sad, the kind of story we like best." You had me at "funny and sad."
“That’s why we like living with animals so much; they exhibit their joy so outwardly, remind us how to be better alive.”