No Two Persons [Book Review] #LiteraryFiction #ShortStories #BooksAboutBooks #BookTwitter

No Two Persons is a book about books, a celebration of fiction, and the unique, personal reading experience.

No Two Persons by Erica Bauermeister

No Two Persons by Erica Bauermeister (cover) Image: cutout newsprint characters stand on top of an open book; yellow text on teal background

Genre/Categories: Literary Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, Book About Books, Short Story Collection

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary of No Two Persons:

One debut author. One book. Nine readers. No Two Persons is a beautifully written collection of short stories or vignettes of nine readers who all read the same book and it means something different to each one. A celebration of fiction and our personal connection to books.

My Thoughts:

No Two Persons

In No Two Persons we have a struggling debut author and nine readers: a publishing assistant, an actor, an artist, a diver, a homeless teenager, a bookseller, a caretaker, a coordinator, and an agent. Although we never have access to the actual story, we gain snippets of it through the reading experiences of nine readers. More than the content of the story, the emphasis is on the reading experience.

You might have had the experience of recommending a favorite five-star book to another reader and they rate it one or two stars or perhaps DNF it. Or, you may have experienced the reverse. You have received an enthusiastic book recommendation and end up feeling “meh” about the book. It’s OK, really.

One example of this is the book, A Place For Us. I connected deeply with this story on many different levels (see my review) but other readers might not have connected in the same ways. Have you read it?

Why does this happen? No two persons read the same book! To the highly recommended unputdownable book or the most hyped new release, we add OUR OWN life experiences, reactions, connections, and moods. Every reader can expect a unique reading experience. Embrace that idea and don’t be reluctant to DNF, set aside, or feel “meh” about your current read. I don’t recommend forcing yourself to finish every book you start.

I think when we embrace the idea that no two persons read the same book, we can celebrate that others might love a book or genre that does not appeal to us.

“I think each story has its own life. In the beginning, it lives in the writer’s mind, and it grows and changes while it’s there. Changes the writer, too I’d bet.” He smiled at her then continued. “At some point it’s written down, and that’s the book readers hold in their hands. But the story isn’t done because it goes on to live in the readers’ heads in a way that’s particular to each of them. We’re all caretakers of the stories… Writers are just the lucky ones that get to know them first.”


Although the vignettes (or short stories) in No Two Persons were all lovely, I felt like I could have read an entire book about each one and was never ready to let the current one slip away to start the next. Especially poignant is the story of the homeless teenager. I NEED an entire book about her! And I loved the vignette about the audio narrator.


I love books about books, and I love a unique premise. In No Two Persons, we first hear about the author’s experience in writing the story that will find its way to nine readers. The writing is lovely and the engaging stories capture nine unique reading experiences.

Recommending No Two Persons:

I highly recommend No Two Persons for fans of beautifully written and poignant short stories, for readers who appreciate books about books and a unique premise, and for book clubs. I’m certain this will be on my best-of-year list.

Related: Another book about the effect of one book on three separate groups of people is Cloud Cuckoo Land. Also by Bauermeister: The Scent Keeper.

My Rating:  5  Stars

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Meet the Author of No Two Persons, Erica Bauermeister

Author of No Two Persons and The Scent Keeper, Erica Bauermeister

Erica Bauermeister is the NYT bestselling author of four novels including The Scent Keeper, The School of Essential Ingredients, Joy for Beginners, and The Lost Art of Mixing. Her newest novel, No Two Persons, will be out in May of 2023. She has also written a memoir, House Lessons: Renovating a Life. Her work has been published in over 25 languages and has been a Reese’s Book Club pick (Scent Keeper), a Costco Pennie’s Pick (School of Essential Ingredients) and all four of her novels have been Indie Next Picks. Before she began writing fiction and memoir, she earned a PhD in literature and co-authored two guides to books: 500 Great Books by Women and Let’s Hear It For the Girls. She lives in Port Townsend, WA and loves to talk with book groups. For more personal insights, you can visit her at or at


Do you love books about books or have you read other books by Bauermeister?
Have you experienced that no two persons read the same book?

Happy Reading Book Buddies!

“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke

“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes

“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

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~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text

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I purchase or borrow from the library all books I review unless explicitly stated that the book is free (arc)

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  1. What an excellent review, Carol. I read a great review of this book by Lynne over at Fictionophile and added it to my TBR, now I am moving it right up to the top. I plan to put it on my TBR for next week. I absolutely love the premise of this one and now I am eager to meet the readers as well.

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