Waiting for Columbus by Thomas Trofimuk

Title:  Waiting for Columbus
Author:  Thomas Trofimuk
Release date:  August 25, 2009
Publisher:  Doubleday
Pages:  336
Genre:  Adult fiction
Source:  Library

A man who says he is Christopher Columbus is being cared for at an insane asylum in contemporary Spain, and although on the surface he appears to be just another crazy person, there is one nurse at the hospital, Consuela, who actually listens and hears what he has to say.  She spends hours of her work days hearing his stories of romance, travel, and mystery, and tries desperately to figure out who he really is inside all these stories.  As Columbus gets closer and closer to the truth of who he really is, Consuela finds herself caring deeply for this confused or possibly senile man, even without knowing his truth.

Okay, so I liked Waiting for Columbus.  I really did.  I was scared, though, because this book has received many, many, many rave reviews from bloggers, and I was highly doubting the book’s ability to live up to such praise.  I don’t know that Waiting for Columbus will be my favorite book of the year, but I definitely can see why these lovely ladies have so many good things to say about it.

The problem is, though, that this is the type of book where talking too much about it can ruin the intrigue.  It is best left undiscussed, so you can read it for yourself and form your own opinions.  I have to be honest when I say that I didn’t LOVE every second of the novel.  There were portions throughout when I just wanted to know what was going on, when I just wanted to understand who this Columbus guy was and why in the world he was stuck in the fifteenth century.  I also grew impatient with Consuela, as she had so much hope for a situation that, to me, was hopeless.  Columbus clearly had some major issues going on, and even though I didn’t know what those issues were, I knew the time wasn’t right for him to be falling in love with his nurse.  It just didn’t seem plausible to me.

BUT.  There’s a but.  The ending made every single little doubt I may have had throughout the novel worth it.  It is an ending that will break your heart and make you cry, but make you say “ahhhh” all at the same time.  It is a satisfying but deeply emotional way to end this novel, and it is the most absolutely perfect ending I can even imagine for a book such as this.

So, in conclusion (because I can’t think of anything else to say), read Waiting for Columbus.  Form your own opinions.  And then email me so we can discuss. 🙂


22 thoughts on “Waiting for Columbus by Thomas Trofimuk”

  1. I read this one and really enjoyed it as well! I loved the way the author drew me down into Columbus’ story until I was caught up within its’ pages. A great read in my opinion 🙂

  2. I’m always hesitant to gush so much about a book for fear that I’ll either scare people off, or people will be disappointed. It’s hard when you want someone to love a book but that little voice is whispering what if they don’t??

    So…I’m glad this one worked for you. And yes, that ending is heartbreakingly perfect.

    1. I know, I do the same thing. But in this case, your gushing was appropriate. 😉 Thanks for being one of several bloggers who brought this one to my attention!

  3. Yes yes yes yes yes! I’m so glad that you also loved this! Email me, woman! We will discuss!

  4. I’ve also heard great things about this book. It’s on my list, for sure! Thanks for the review!

    Oh, I love the new look!

  5. I’m so glad to see you liked it! I can understand your frustration in the middle bit, but am so happy that you loved it, in the end! This was definitely a favorite for me, and I also couldn’t resist raving and gushing 🙂 Now I am hoping my gushing doesn’t ruin the book for anyone else!

    1. I’m glad you can understand my frustration with the middle parts, because it seems that no one else experience that. Either way, I still loved the book because the ending made it all worth it, to me.

    1. That’s how I felt about it until reading all those bloggers’ reviews. So I’m happy to know I’ve inspired you to do the same!

  6. As I will inevitably read the ending early, will I understand it without having read the middle?

    This book sounds amazing! I can’t wait to read it!

    1. NOOOOOO. Do NOT read the ending early!! That would be a tragic mistake.

      Honestly, I think it would sort of spoil the rest of the book for you. And yes, you might understand it, but it would take all the fun out of reading the rest of it. 😦

  7. There are so many books that disappoint me at the ending. This would be worth reading just to have a book that not only didn’t disappoint, but really made the whole book worth reading.

  8. Dear Heather,
    Thank you for your reading. And thank you for liking my book enough to write about it. I appreciate your careful read. I am working on a new book, and so don’t get a chance to think about Consuela and Columbus much anymore. I miss them.
    All the best,


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