very good, I read it in a day.This is a well written book about death that makes the reader appreciate life.From the prologue Berg begins pointing out the little things that make this life worth living.
I love this author, and once again, she does not disappoint. This was a poignant book of those who somehow feel left out of things when younger in school and always in life. It shows how one perceives themselves and the way other people see us. A great story that teaches us that things are not always as they seem. Sad, but beautiful. GinaK
What a beautiful book! The first line on the back cover is "The powerful ..." and that describes the book perfectly. Nurse Myra Lipinski is a lonely spinster at 51, when her high school love, Chip Reardon, re-enters her life. Chip is dying of brain cancer and chooses to spend his last days with Myra. As he is dying, he teaches Myra everything about living.
Read this in one day. I highly recommend this book. A story of a lonely woman who is a nurse & comes to care for a man she had a crush on in high school. I forgot this was a work of fiction, as the story could be true. Berg writes with such conviction & ease, it's easy to read.
I loved listening to this CD. The story is heart warming and so enjoyable. It is sad in some respects but gives you a broader view into the heart of a lonely girl who doesn't realize her assets. I recommend it highly.
I really thought this book was a looking glass and different perspective of high school days and how we see ourselves. If you've ever felt inadequate and like a nerdy unpopular kid in school this book will make you re-think the whole ugly idea. We can be more and be happy if we let ourselves. I think Elizabeth Berg gets it right and does another amazing job in this book. A great read!!!
This is a review of the abridged audiobook version of this story.
In the beginning, it was enjoyable - Myra, a 51 year old wallflower has become a nurse and while her life is not exciting, it is livable. She has her own home, an absolutely wonderful dog named Frank and a Porsche. She no longer works in a hospital setting but visits homebound patients who can't live without her. While she did seem believable in the beginning, she quickly escalated into "Saint Myra" mode - dealing with all of her patients problems, taking a 98-year old woman (who also still volunteers in the library and has just applied for a job at the local bookstore) to the movies, counseling a 15-year old on whether or not she should put her baby up for adoption, going into horrible neighborhoods and befriending gunshot victim drug dealers, and does all this while taking her dog with her to visit the patients in their homes. I rather liked the dog!
What Myra does regret is that she never had a chance to be with the boy of her dreams - Chip Reardon (horrible name for a grown man). Lo and behold, who is her newest patient - good old Chip who just happens to be dying of a brain tumor and actually wants to die rather than fight to hold on and go through aggressive cancer treatment. And what does St. Myra do? Not only does she take Chip on as a patient, she lets him move into her home with her. And then, to elevate her status as the most used female in the entire United States, she invites Chip's former girlfriend - the senior high prom queen, most beautiful girl in the school to come visit and even lets them make love in the house while Myra is in her bedroom, feeling forlorn.
I understand feeling empathy and sympathy for a character in a book, but Myra came across as being unbelievable, naive and used instead of compassionate and loving. Definitely not as good as her other books.
I have never read a Berg book i did not like. I have some that i liked better than others. This is one of them. This is a lovely story about a man who has an illness and chooses to not persue treetment. His visiting nurse, Myra is someone i came to care about as a beautiful lonely kind heart. This story is so well written it flows...making it feel like it is over before i wanted it to be. Ms Berg writes like life is sometimes or could very well be at any moment. Read just one of her books in your persuit of tasteing authors, her novels are treasures in your hand that creeps into the mind & heart.
This book has some very believable characters and beautiful language. Then, it has some totally unrealistic developments & actions by people who I felt were stuck in the plot to make a point. Overall, although it had a bit of a romance novel feel in spots, it was a feel-good, act-nice bit of fiction. It made me want to read more by the author. And it left me with a rosy glow that the leading lady had become truly a leading lady within her own life. She's had a dull time, served others as a nurse, never felt desirable, and suddenly a dying patient who went to school with her clings to her in a romantic love situation as he slips from life. While that may seem implausible, we never know what's ahead in life. This was a short and comforting read.
I like Elizabeth Berg! This is my second favorite of her books (first is All Are Welcome Here) Well written, good story line, and she's not afraid to tackle tough situations. Had to read this straight through, into the wee hours of morning.
Self-anointed spinster at 51 Myra a visiting nurse considers herself reasonably cobntent, until Chip Reardon, the too good to be true golden boy she has adored from afar, is assigned to be her new patient.
Oprah author Berg (her Open House was a 2000 Book Club selection) turns in another sweet, unprepossessing and reassuringly predictable novel whose characters experience loneliness, loss and healing. "Odd-shaped," and with an "unfortunate" face, Myra Lipinski has been lonely all her life; she trained as a nurse "because I knew it would be a way for people to love me." Now 51, she lives alone with her dog and works as a visiting nurse in Boston, caring for an array of eccentrics that includes the feuding Schwartz couple, the feisty DeWitt Washington and the anxious teenage mother Grace. Resigned to spinsterhood, Myra is secretly thrilled when her agency assigns her to care for a former crush, Chip Reardon, who has returned to his parents' home with end-stage brain cancer. In high school, Chip was a golden boy, athletic and clever, out of ugly duckling Myra's league. Now, though, he and Myra strike up a friendship based on their mutual loneliness and on Chip's resistance to his parents, who want him to pursue aggressive treatment for his cancer. Chip prefers to die peacefully, a decision that only Myra seems to understand. Chip and Myra become inseparable: he tags along on her patient visits and eventually moves into her house, where their budding friendship takes a romantic turn. On the brink of death, Chip helps Myra to realize that her isolation is as much self-induced as fated; throughout their lives, both he and Myra have shied away from human closeness. In an inspiring, well-deserved denouement, Chip's inevitable death forces Myra to embrace the world in all its bittersweet complexity. Berg's fans will be grateful for the same gift: a novel that serves as a gentle, if unambitious, reminder to "only connect."
ELizabeth Berg is one of my all time favorite authors. She writes about "ordinary" people like no one else can and Myra Lipinsky is no exception. She will tug at your heart strings and make you wish you could meet her. I am never disappointed with EB.
The book was very good, but it definitely wasn't my favorite Berg novel. As always, I love how real Berg makes her characters and scenarios. Sometimes her writing style is so intimate I feel like I'm reading something personal of my own!
Heroine, Myra Lipinsky is a self proclaimed spinster at fift-one whose life centers arond her dog, Frank and her career as a visiting nurse. Just when she had given up on finding love she is sent to the home of Chip Reardon. I enjoyed this book as I have enjoyed Elizabeth Bergs other books.
A torn front cover (taped) and some underlining...all by previous owner!
A very good book! You love the characters! It's a beautiful portrait of one woman's resilence in the face of loneliness, and of a union that transcends life's most unexpeced and challenging circumstances.