Sunday, April 5, 2020

Sunday Thoughts and Books Read in March





Outside…
It's a bit cloudy this morning but we are expecting a high of 60°. We will definitely be taking a nice walk later.
Reading/Listening to…
This week I’m reading/listening to: The Red Lotus; Chris Bohjalian. (slow start but I'm really into it now).
Books Reviewed Last Week…
None (but I do have at least 5 to post about from March)
Watching…
We saw Contagion in 2011 at the movie theater but rented it again yesterday. It has a terrific cast and so very well explains the pandemic we are dealing with right now! Highly Recommended.
Exercise…
We managed to walk 4 times this week and I finally set up my yoga mat and accessories in my loft to begin an at home routine - definitely not as enjoyable but I'm doing it.
In The Kitchen…
We have our groceries delivered every 2 weeks, it's coming today so the freezer was pretty bare.  We had things like: meatloaf, a shrimp, veggie and rice dish, pasta and meatballs, cheeseburgers, egg salad sandwiches and soup and cornbread - definitely too many carbs. Can't wait for salad stuff to arrive today.
New To Me Stuff:
I've been missing my retail therapy so, I treated myself to 2 new tops from J. Jill (40% off sale). Not sure when I'll actually wear these but oh...well.





Today’s To Do List…

Catch up on blogs, read, go for a walk and maybe catch up on reviews.


Looking forward to…
Seeing my children and grandchildren in person some day.  My granddaughter (sisters) will be 8 and 6 this month and it's sad that they can't have friends or family to celebrate. My daughter mentioned trying to coordinate a Zoom party. The other granddaughter's birthday is in July so, maybe, maybe things will be a little more normal.
  1. Long Bright River; Liz Moore - 4/5 (audio/March)
  2. The Best Sound in the World; Cindy Wume - 4/5 (print/March)
  3. Juniper Jupiter; Lizzy Stewart - 4/5 (print/March)
  4. The Nickel Boys; Colson Whitehead - 5/5 (eGalley/audio/eBook combo/March)
  5. Nothing More Dangerous; Allen Eskens - 5/5 (library/print/audio/March)
  6. The Most Dangerous Place; James Grippando - 4/5 (audio/March)
  7. Animalkind; Ingrid Newkirk & Gene Stone - 4.5/5 (NF/print/library/March)
  8. A Perfect Alibi; Phillip Margolin - 2.5/5 (audio/March)
  9. The Library Book; Susan Orleans (NF) - 3.5/5 (audio/March)
  10. The Girls of Atomic City; Denise Kiernan (NF/Bookgroup) - 4/5 (print/March)
Most of my reading happened in the first 2 weeks in March before things turned crazy here. I read (10) books in March: (2) children's, (3) NF, (5) Fiction - 4 were print versions, 4 - audios and 2-eGalley/audio combo reads. I still have 5 reviews to write!

                                               
Favorite Books in March













Stay Safe All

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - All the Broken People; Leah Konen

Welcome to First Chapter/Intros, now hosted by  Socrates Book Reviews
Thanks to Yvonne for taking over FCFPTI.

G.P. Putnam 2020

"People have all sorts of ideas about what they'd do if it happened to them.

They'd tell their friends. They'd make that call. They'd leave.  They certainly wouldn't continue on like normal, banging out personal essays or temping at whatever online mag needed a freelance editor for the day.  They'd tell their family (assuming they still had family in their lives to tell), they'd keep themselves busy (pottery class! political campaigns! yoga!) They'd heal, and they'd move on, and they'd rebuild their lives.

That's what I'd always thought too."

Recently, this title caught my eye, I hope to start it soon. What do you think about the intro?

Friday, March 27, 2020

A COVID-19 Check-In - Not Reading Much

How are all of you doing in these crazy times, as most of us are forced to remain home in order to stay safe and help stop the spread of the virus?



As a retired person and an introvert,  the staying home more part isn't difficult, but the not going out to lunch or dinner and not seeing family/friends has been. Yes, we can still get takeout, but I've avoided ALL unnecessary trips outside of the house and, can't help wondering if the person who might be preparing takeout might unknowingly have the virus. We've canceled f/up doctors appointments, started having groceries delivered 2x a month, and hair/nail appointments are a thing of the past as well. (I'm seriously thinking that this may be the perfect time to stop coloring my hair and embrace my gray).  Just when I thought I'd be reading more, I find it difficult to concentrate, reading 10-15 pages and then staring at the ceiling a lot. (I do have several reviews I've been working on).  I am obsessed with the news (not a good thing, I know).  I'm so happy we have pets to pamper and play with.  The other day my daughter ran out of Tylenol and every place was out of stock, so we drove to her house and dropped it on her porch, waving to her and the girls from a distance. How sad is it that we can't even be with our own families (unless they are part of your family unit).

Typical Boring Day - I usually wake up by 6 a.m., have coffee, while we watch Morning Joe, then I make us breakfast (more coffee), check social media, do some chores, we go for a walk, have a snack/tea or light lunch while watching more news, check social media, watch our 401K's plunge, then we play cards/read/check in with friends/family or nap,  think about preparing dinner, shower (sometimes this happens before breakfast), have dinner, some wine, watch a bit more tv and bed. Next day - repeat! Oh, and yes, I'm finding it difficult to sleep more than 5 hours most mights.

What's your typical day like in the midst of this pandemic?

Stay Safe!

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - Sea Wife; Amity Gage



Thanks to Yvonne at Socrates’ Book Reviews for taking over FCFPTI.

 Sea Wife; Amity Gage
A. Knopf - 2020

1.

"Where does a mistake begin? Lately I've found this simple question difficult. Impossible, actually.  A mistake has roots in both time and space--a person's reasoning and her whereabouts. Somewhere in the intersection of those two dimensions is the precisely bounded mistake--in nautical terms, its coordinates."

I haven't been able to focus on much reading lately but, I started this one last night and I'm enjoying it so far.  Isn't the cover beautiful? What do you think about the intro?

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic; Matt McCarthy, MD


Thank you Vicki for hosting FCFPTI these last few years. I'm thrilled this Tuesday feature will continue. Thank you, Yvonne @ Socrates’ Book Reviews for keeping this going beginning Tuesday, the 24th.

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros invites you to share the first paragraph or two of a book that you are reading or plan to read soon. 
Avery - 2019
Prologue
"IT WAS JUST after dawn when I felt the buzz on my hip. I broke stride, put down my coffee, and glanced at my pager: I was needed in the emergency room. It was 2014, an unseasonably warm October day, and the text induced a flurry of anxiety and excitement.  After eleven years of training, I had accepted a position as a staff physician at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, a tertiary care center on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, and a patient had just arrived with a perplexing infection, one that had stumped the team in the ER."
What do you think - pass or read more?

Monday, March 16, 2020

2 more fun kids books - Dandelion's Dream; Yoko Tanaka and Madame Badobedah; Sophie Dahl




Dandelion's Dream; Yoko Tanaka
Candlewick Press - 2020

It's dandelion season and buds are sprouting everywhere but, then the unexpected happens -- bit bit bit one of the buds sprouts into a real -- lion.

In general, I'm not a fan of wordless picture books for the very young but this one is "too cute for words." Who wouldn't like to experience the cute little lion's adventures this spring?

The charcoal colored background with bright pop's of yellow on the pages throughout made for an imaginative springtime story.


Madame Badobedah; Sophie Dahl (Illust-Lauren O'Hara
Walker Books (Candlewick Press) 2020

A story in 3 parts

Mabel is an only child and she lives the Mermaid Hotel where he dad is the manager and her mom is the "boss".  Mabel is a keen observer of all things and people.  When a feather-clad, mature guest with a growly voice arrives with a heavy suitcase, the curious Mabel, names her "Madame Badobedah".  The guest is assigned to Room 32, a room with a secret, Mabel's curious but, not allowed to enter a guest's room so she becomes - Mabel the Spy and she comes up with a theory, Madame B is a super-villain!

First and second grade readers will enjoy the visual and challenges that this charming book offers.  This book is a funny, engaging and imaginative story of friendship. Wonderful, fun illustrations as well.






Sunday, March 15, 2020

Nothing More Dangerous; Allen Eskens


AUTHOR:  Allen Eskens
PUBLISHER: Mulholland Books/Hachette Audio
PUB. YEAR: 2019
SETTING: MO
FORMAT: combo/print/audio/library
RATING: - 5/5


Set in the 1970's Ozark mountains, the story opens with talk of a missing black woman named Lida Poe. She was believed to have stolen money from the company where she had worked and had possibly left town. Jessup, MO, however, is a small town full or prejudice and steeped in racism. The whereabouts of the missing woman plays an important part in the novel.

Boady Sanden is a 15 year old boy living with his strict, widowed mother. After getting caught stealing his mother sends him to a Catholic high school where he is bullied and just doesn't seem to fit in.  He spends his free time exploring the woods, reading and talking with Hoke, his retired neighbor. Hoke is a positive influence, providing nurturing lessons on life which leads to a wonderful friendship.  When the Elgin's, a black family, moves in across the street, the father hired to run a local company, Boady becomes good friends with son Thomas. Boady begins to see the injustices black people have had to endure.

What a great novel! Honestly I've enjoyed every book this author has written.  If you love great character development, a little mystery and great writing, this is the book for you. It was wonderful to see Boady rid himself of the racial prejudices he had grown up with. Yes, this book has some unpleasant topics like:  bullying, violence and white supremacy which is hard to read about at times, but, it is an important part of this novel.  A haunting coming of age story. Read it!

The Nickel Boys; Colson Whitehead


AUTHOR:  Colson Whitehead
PUBLISHER: Doubleday/Random House Audio
PUB. YEAR: 2019
SETTING: FL
FORMAT: combo/eBook/audio
RATING: - 5/5


Set in the 1960s, Jim Crow era, The Nickel Boys is a work of fiction but, based on an actual place: The Dozier school, a horrible reform school in Marianna, FL that remained in operation for 100+ years. In this story that reform school is known as The Nickel Academy.

Elwood Curtis is a smart black boy who is being raised by his strict grandmother. He's on the right path, headed for college but, one bad decision lands him at the Nickel Academy. It's a place where young men are brutally abused: tortured and sexually assaulted. Despite all he must endure he tries to keep Dr. Martin Luther King's messages and ideals on his mind and in his heart.  His friend Turner is more skeptical, he calls his friend naive. The boys try to follow the rules and not buck the system knowing full well that their lives are at risk.

The Nickel Boys is a relatively short book. It's a tough yet important story about a terrible time in US history. I thought the story was well written, heartbreaking at times, with a rather shocking and abrupt ending.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

a few new books for kids


Quarto Group - 2020

A whimsical story about a little lion named Roy who lived in a big city and loved music as did his friend Jemmy. Roy traveled far and wide searching for the most perfect sounds. Often distracted, the more Roy searched the more confused and lonely he began to feel being away from home.

When he returns home and sees his friend Jemmy again, he was much happier than he had been before. Maybe their music wasn't perfect, but together, they sang and danced and Roy wasn't lonely any longer.

A friendship story with adorable illustrations -- even though at times they didn't seem consistent with the text/message.


4/5 stars

Juniper Jupiter; Lizzy Stewart
Frances Lincoln Children's Books - 2020


Juniper Jupiter, she's a super hero, super brave, super sneaky, super strong and, she can fly!

Juniper quickly finds out that being a super hero is a lonely job.  She decides she could use a side kick. She makes a list of qualities her side kick should possess and posts the notices all around town.  She's not prepared for the gigantic response. It's all very confusing for her and little did she realize that the perfect side kick was right there before her eyes.

Water color and ink art work make for some bright and fun illustrations. The story is simple, yet fun and silly too.

4/5 stars

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Wild Game; Adrienne Brodeur


Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter 
First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where readers post the opening paragraph(s)
 of a book that they are reading or plan to read. Here's my pick for this week:

Wild Game; Adrienne Brodeur
Houghton, Mifflin Harcourt - 2019

Prologue

A BURIED TRUTH, that's all a lie really is.

Cape Cod is a place where things surface and disappear again: wooden lobster pots, the vertebrae of humpback whales, chunks of frosted glass. One day there's nothing; the next, the cynical forces of nature--erosion, wind, and tide--unearth something that has been there all along. A day later, it's gone.

I love memoirs and have been looking forward to this one.  What do you think?

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Long Bright River, Liz Moore



AUTHOR:  Liz Moore
PUBLISHER: Penguin Audio
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: Philadelphia, PA

FORMAT: audio
RATING: - 4/5

The city of Philadelphia (Kensington) comes alive in this story of two sisters. Mickey is a 30-something police officer and single mother to a 4 year old boy. Kacey is her younger sister.  Mickey has always been protective of her younger sister, often taking on a parental role. When Kacey loses her battle with addiction, all Mickey can do is watch from the sidelines. She tries to keep tabs on her sister while on duty, watching her sister prostitute herself to pay for her next fix.

Soon it appears a possible serial killer has been targeting homeless, addicted women in the area and Kacey hasn't been seen in while, Mickey is desperate to try and find out whether Kacey is alive or a new victim.

This book is rather long and at times slow moving. There are lots of unnecessary details about the streets and neighborhood places of Philadelphia. Despite that, I loved the way the story moved back and forth in time which created an important look at the strong bond between these sisters and the earliest role that their parents had played.  I'm guessing many readers might go into this book thinking its a thriller/mystery, but, it's really more like a police procedural and family saga IMO.  Although there is not a lot of action in this novel and the subject matter is tough at times,  it's a timely story about the Opioid crisis and its effects on the victim and their family.  The audio was well done.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

The Last Time I Saw You; Liv Constantine



TITLE: The Last Time I Saw You
AUTHOR:  Liv Constantine
PUBLISHER: Harper Audio
PUB. YEAR: 2019
SETTING: Maryland

FORMAT: ARC/audio
RATING: - 4/5


Dr. Kate English was a woman to be envied: successful, an heiress to a large fortune, charming husband and daughter.  When her mother is murdered in her own home, she just doesn't understand who could have wanted her dead.  Soon after menacing texts and other messages, directed at Kate, begin appearing making her wonder whether she could be the next target.

Kate turns to Blair, a former friend, who has been absent from her life for 15 years for consolation.  Blair is a mystery writer and plans to help figure out who may have wanted Lily dead.

High society, money, hidden secrets and betrayals surface at every turn.  Just when I thought I knew who might have been behind all of this, something unexpected presented itself.  Even though the characters felt a bit flat at times, overall, this was a quick enjoyable read/listen combo.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - Animalkind; Ingrid Newkirk & Gene Stone


Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter 
First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where readers post the opening paragraph(s)
 of a book that they are reading or plan to read. Here's my pick for this week:

Ingrid Newkirk & Gene Stone 
Simon & Schuster - 2020

Introduction

The dog who jumps for joy when you come home. The emperor penguin guarding his child through a subzero blizzard. The dolphin smiling at us from the water. The sleepy  cat's purr of contentment. The manta's rays intricate underwater ballets. The lark's exquisite song. Animals delight, fascinate, and enrich human lives and thoughts everyday of the year.

I'm a sucker for books about animals. How about you, read more or pass?

Sunday, March 1, 2020

February Reading and Movies

Leaping ahead into March (can you believe it)? February found me watching several wonderful movies. (2) are Netflix movies and the others available "On Demand".  If you haven't seen these surprising gems, check them out.






Sadly, my choice of books in February failed to "wow" me for the most part. In fact, only (2) fiction books were decent reads for me. (I think I'll do better in March as the 2 books I've started are very good.) How was your month in books?

Books Read in February (7) YTD Totals (16)
  1. Mr. Nobody; Catherine Steadman - 3.5/5 (eGalley/February))
  2. The Woman in Cabin 10; Ruth Ware - 4/5 (audio/reread/book group/February)
  3. The Winters; Lisa Gabriele - 3/5 - (ARC/February)
  4. Eat Right 4 Your Type: The Individualized Blood Type Diet Solution - 5/5 (reread  2008/Feb)
  5. A Hundred Small Lessons; Ashley Hays - 3.5/5 (audio/February)
  6. The Last Time I Saw You; Liv Constantine - 4/5 (ARC/audio/February)
  7. Such a Fun Age; Kiley Reid - 3/5 (audio/February)



           Favorite (2) books of February







Currently Reading


A Hundred Small Lessons; Ashley Hay and Such a Fun Age; Kiley Reid


TITLE: A Hundred Small Lessons
AUTHOR:  Ashley Hay
PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster Audio
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: Australia 

FORMAT: audio
RATING: - 3.5/5


Elsie Gormley, husband Clem, and now adult children have enjoyed a long life and shared history in the family home in Brisbane, AU. Now Elsie is forced to leave it all behind after a fall has her entering a nursing home.  Her home is sold but, her memories of the past remain.

Lucy and Ben and their young son are the new owners of Elsie's former home. They are a young couple trying to adjust to a lifestyle change since becoming parents.  When Lucy finds an item belonging to Elsie, she feels a connection to her and the home's history.

A character driven novel, well written that delves into the personal lives and challenges of the two families: love, motherhood, marriage life and death. Although the story is well written it was very slow for me. It's been compared to Olive Kitteridge; Elizabeth Strout (which I loved) but, I didn't see the connection.  I think this story will appeal to readers who like quiet reflective fiction.

TITLE: Such a Fun Age
AUTHOR:  Kiley Reid
PUBLISHER: Penguin Audio
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: Philadelphia
FORMAT: eGalley/audio
RATING: - 3/5


Alix Chamberlain is a 30-something, white woman and successful social influencer who knows what it takes to get the attention of others.  Emira Tucker is a 20-something, black woman and college graduate who is trying to figure out a direction for a satisfying future, but for now, she babysits Briar, the young daughter of Alix.

Early on in the novel there is a racially motivated incident at a grocery store where a security guard questions Emira being out late at night with Briar, a white child. Emira is detained while her story is investigated. The whole scene is filmed by a young white man, Kelley.  Alix is horrified when she learns what has happened and wants to make it up to Emira.

This is a character driven novel; I thought the characters was unlikeable and shallow and found them pretty annoying on audio as well. I was disappointed that the Emira character, who I wanted to root for, was so underdeveloped.   I felt this story had potential but, the execution was the issue. I didn't get the hype over this novel.

Saturday, February 29, 2020

Eat Right 4 Your Type; Dr. Peter D'Adamo



TITLE: Eat Right 4 Your Type: 4 Blood Types, 4 Diets
AUTHOR: Dr. Peter D'Adamo
PUBLISHER: Berkley 
PUB. YEAR: 2016 edition
FORMAT: print/library
RATING: 5/5

I read this book 10+ years ago out of curiosity but never followed the recommendations. Now in my 60's and in pretty good health except for and under active thyroid for which I take a pill each day.   I am also constantly bothered by post nasal drip.  I also began to suspect I was lactose intolerant due to stomach issues after consuming milk and cheese products, so I decided to revisit this book.

BINGO: Type A and dairy products are not compatible. In fact Type A's have a sensitive immune system and do best with a vegetarian diet: plenty of fruits and veggies and whole grains (no tomatoes, corn, peppers or potatoes, cabbage, eggplant and mushrooms are also no-nos, as is shellfish and meat - turkey is okay as is some whitefish).  

TYPE A's also do best with gentle exercise like yoga, golf and meditation.

Many people claim to lose a good amount of weight following the plan, based on your blood type. I just started by eliminating dairy this week and feel better already - bye, bye, bloating.  The book also recommended starting each morning (before coffee) with a cup of warm water and squeezed lemon - boy does that work in helping to eliminate excess mucous.   I'm seeing positive results by just making these 2 small changes thus far. I never ate much meat anyways so total elimination would not be an issue for me.

This book just made sense to me considering the fact that not everyones internal chemistry functions in the same manor. I liked the insight as to how to fight off illness, have more energy and how to slow down the aging process.  Have you read it?

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - Long Bright River; Liz Moore


Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter 
First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where readers post the opening paragraph(s)
 of a book that they are reading or plan to read. Here's my pick for this week:

                                                                                  
Long Bright River; Liz Moore
Penguin Audio - 2020

"There's a body on the Gurney Street tracks, age unclear, probable overdose, says the dispatcher.

Kacey, I think.  This is a twitch, a reflex, something sharp and subconscious that lives inside me and send the same message racing to the same base part of my brain every time a female is reported.Then the more rational part of me comes plodding along, lethargic, uninspired, a dutiful dull soldier here to remind me about odds and statistics: nine hundred overdose victims in Kensington last year.  Not one of them Kacey.  Furthermore, this sentry reproves me, you seem to have forgotten the importance of being professional.  Straighten your shoulders. Smile a little. Keep your face relaxed, your eyebrows unfurrowed, your chin untucked. Do your job."

What do you think? Read more or pass?

Friday, February 21, 2020

The Winters; Lisa Gabriele



TITLE: The Winters
AUTHOR:  Lisa Gabriele
PUBLISHER: Viking/Penguin
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: Cayman Island and Long Island, NY
FORMAT: ARC
RATING: - 3/5


Loosely based on Daphne Du Maurier's novel Rebecca, this is one of those books that you might have to suspend belief a bit, but, it hooked me early on -- at least for a while.

In this story, the 26 year old unnamed narrator looks back at a romance that is clear has ended badly. She's a sad young woman whose parents are dead, she's living in the Caribbean working at a charter boat rental establishment.  It's there that she meets Max Winter, a rich senator from the state of New York. After just a month or so there's romance, passion and expensive gifts, making Max hard to resist.

Max whisks the young woman back to his mansion Asherley, in Long Island, New York.  She leaves the Cayman Islands for a life of luxury, but, unfortunately, memories of the first wife, Rebekah, are everywhere haunting her at every turn.  Then there is his 15 year old daughter, Dani, who wants nothing to do with her father's fiancee, even threatening to kill herself.

This was a fun read initially. The air of mystery held my interest but, then unnecessary animal death written into the story line spoiled it for me, causing me to skip ahead to see how it would end. Overall, my rating might have been higher but, for me, never is animal cruelty acceptable -- even in fiction.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Mr. Nobody; Catherine Steadman


TITLE: Mr. Nobody
AUTHOR:  Catherine Steadman
PUBLISHER: Ballantine Books
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: UK
FORMAT: eGalley
RATING: - 3.5/5


"Mr. Nobody" is a 40-something man who is found on a British beach in Norfolk on a winter's day. With no ID, he is taken to a hospital where his identity remains a mystery. A nurse and the media, fascinated with this individual, begin to refer to him as Matthew.  As time ticks on and still no closer to finding out who the man is, those involved in his case begin to wonder whether he is truly unable to recall details of his past or, is he just unwilling to communicate?  Is there something in his past he is hiding from?

Dr. Emma Lewis is just over 30 years old and an expert in her field of neuropsychiatry. She is asked to step in on "Mr. Nobody, A.K.A. Matthew's case."  Emma, however, is a woman with a past she'd prefer to forget, and, stepping in on this case means returning to the town that she fled from years earlier.  Although Emma does not seem to know the mystery man, he seems to know her. Could there be a connection? Also, why is the government interested in him as well?

I love a good psych thriller and although the author's first book, Something in the Water, was a psychological thriller I enjoyed, this book failed to "wow" me. The first third of the book moved quickly, but then my interest waned a bit. There were some unexpected twists, but, overall, I felt somewhat unsatisfied when I finished this one.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Olive, Again; Elizabeth Strout


TITLE: Olive, Again
AUTHOR:  Elizabeth Strout
PUBLISHER: 
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: Maine
FORMAT: library/audio
RATING: - 5/5


The sequel to Olive Kitteridge (2008), the prickly Olive is back in her charming town of Crosby, Maine.  A retired math teacher, now in her lates seventies to early eighties (she ages a decade in this offering), her husband Henry has passed away and, despite her tough exterior, she's lonely and misses having that human connection.  

Like the original book, Olive's story is told through a series of (13) somewhat connected stories involving some of the same characters and some new ones as well. We learn more about her strained relationship with her son and his new family, as well as details about Jack Kennison, a Harvard Alum and new husband to Olive. 

I loved traveling along side with Olive through her senior years as she reflects on her life. It's easy to see that beyond Olive's matter-of-fact, blunt style, she a woman with a big heart who faces  the same vulnerabilities as other seniors as she ages.  She's softened a bit and perhaps a little more tolerant as well, but, by the end, it's pretty clear that Olive is just a woman who is just looking for peace and contentment in the time she has left on earth.

Beautifully written, I found Olive, Again, to be an emotionally moving read. The author does an amazing job forcing the reader to think about the emptiness factor seniors can experience as one ages and the importance of that human connection. The audio was expertly done.