Book Reviews of Saint Maybe

Saint Maybe
Saint Maybe
Author: Anne Tyler
ISBN-13: 9780449911600
ISBN-10: 0449911608
Publication Date: 8/27/1996
Pages: 352
Rating:
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 42

4 stars, based on 42 ratings
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

23 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Saint Maybe on + 20 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Very interesting. The main character who is torn between living a normal life or that of raising his son's children is quite manages to also join a church that is almost cult like. Along the way he struggles with his decision and debates whether to become a priest, marry, be a father, and then live with the secret that he punishes himself with daily.
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 81 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Wonderful story of an unconventional family and a man who spends his life trying to atone for a tragedy he believes he caused.
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 40 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Excellent. Anne Tyler has a wonderful way of getting to the nitty gritty of human character.
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Helpful Score: 1
A wonderful story of a young man searching for forgiveness and finding religion, through a bit of sacrifice and a lot of love, at the church of the Second Chance. The author is a "master" in capturing family life and interpersonal struggle. A great Book Club read!
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 16 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Warm, funny and a good read about the Bedloe family and second chances.
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 47 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is one of Ann Tyler's most captivating books; full of emotion and a kind of magic. Her writing is articulate and her characters are quirky, yet ordinary people.
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Helpful Score: 1
One terrible night, Ian Bedloe, 19, third child of cheerful Bee and agreeable Doug (one of those Tyler men who say, ``Well, now''), blurts out to brother Danny his suspicions about Danny's wife--bright-lipsticked, tiny-faced Lucy, mother of two by a divorced husband and of an infant (by Danny?). Danny, slightly drunk, drives off into a fatal accident; months later, sad and scatty Lucy dies also--after what was probably an accidental dose of sleeping pills. Clubbed by the horror of unbearable guilt, Ian is drawn to the storefront Church of the Second Chance, presided over by Reverend Emmett, undoubtedly God's agent--bony, magisterial, discovered later to be affectionately capricious. Reverend Emmett lays out the Way: forget college, provide for and rescue aging parents from the care of Lucy's kids (ages six, three, and baby) and ``set things right.'' Ian ``saw that he was beginning from scratch...as low as he could get.'' Years pass; Ian works as a carpenter leading a life of celibacy and service; kids mature and shape up. Where is that reward? Ian is ripe for a Sign. It comes, of course--as do love and a second chance. As always, Tyler's people--from powerless small children (whose ``every waking minute was scary'') to the electric, poignant Lucy to the crackly little church group--are as intensely real and yet ultimately unknowable as those who somehow have changed one's life.
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 73 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
New York Time Notable Book of the Year - best of Anne Tyler. The unusual side story involving the Church of the Second Chance actually has something to tell us all - even those of us who are strict non-church goers.
reviewed Saint Maybe on
It's 1965, and the Bedloes are just your average all-American family living an ideal, apple-pie existence in Baltimore, Maryland. Theirs are simple, loving, happy lives. Then, in the blink of an eye, a single tragic event occurs that will transform their lives forever - particularly that of seventeen-year-old Ian Bedloe, the youngest son, who blames himself for the sudden "accidental" death of his older brother Danny.

Depressed and depleted, Ian is almost crushed under the weight of a nearly unbearable secret guilt. Then one crisp January evening, he catches sight of a window with a glowing yellow neon sign: the Church of the Second Chance. Ian enters and soon discovers that forgiveness must be earned, through a bit of sacrifice and a lot of love...

I absolutely loved this book - a definite A+++! In my opinion, Ms. Tyler has written a well-told, engrossing story once again. This story is filled with characters that the reader can truly care about, living through circumstances that are completely believable. I read Saint Maybe perhaps ten years ago, but could barely remember the plot when I read it again. I suppose that that makes this a 'new' book for me - one that is a definite keeper!
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 10 more book reviews
I love Anne Tyler..this is one of her best family dramas..
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I like Anne Tyler. and this book is an interesting tale of life choices and roads taken.
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very quick read and quite interesting as Always provided by Anne Tyler
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Great Anne Tyler yarn. A must read for the fans of Tyler.
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FROM THE PUBLISHER
Pulitzer Prize winning author Anne Tyler gives us the powerfully poignant story of a young man's guilt over his brother's death and of his years of effort at atonement.

Baltimore - home of the "apple pie" Bedlow family. At 17, Ian, the youngest, has the usual dreams of the future. But he also has a secret that sparks a fatal tragedy - and from that moment on, nothing in Ian's life will ever be the same as he painfully pursues redemption. His journey will begin with the Church of the Second Chance, whose philosophy is that forgiveness must be earned. It will move through the therapeutic discovery of his own creative abilities.

And finally, it will culminate in Ian's healing through the lure of big-boned Rita who burst into the Bedlow's lives and sweeps away the cobwebs.
reviewed Saint Maybe on
Anne Tyler is one of my favorite writers.
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 88 more book reviews
When I saw the book at the library sale I bought it. Anne Tyler has a reputation as a good writer anyway and I was sure I would enjoy it. There were some sentimental reasons as well -- I lived in Baltimore a good 20 years or so of my life and that is where the book is set.

It's an extraordinary story of how profoundly people's lives can change from one little selfish act. Ian Bedloe is a 17 year old teenager feeling much put upon by his sister-in-law and children. Lucy just seemed to come out of nowhere to marry Ian's brother. She brought with her 2 children from a previous marriage and has a 3rd child "prematurely". Because Lucy is late coming home to relieve babysitter Ian, he misses his date with his girlfriend. Ian's brother arrives home next and Ian angrily accuses Lucy of infidelity. The brother is involved in a tragic accident minutes later. It doesn't end there either. How do you cope with a guilty conscience? How do you deal with kids no one seems to want? Is there ever forgiveness for some sins?

The book went on about 50 pages too long but otherwise was totally engrossing and compelling. Once the youngest child got to be about 11, events began skipping forward a little too quickly and I began to lose "touch" with what the characters were going through. I was happy with the ending--it just could have come sooner.

I have this book cross listed with Book Crossing
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Happy family suffers a tragic event that changes their lives, especially the life of their younger son, who finds redemption in The Church of the Second Chance. It was a best-seller in its day.
reviewed Saint Maybe on
Tyler is an exceptional story teller. Her stories are for and about people who stop one day and think, "Hey, how did this become my life?" Not bitter, not dramatic, just curious. She makes the mundane interesting and the interesting fascinating. I just love her.
reviewed Saint Maybe on
In 1965, the happy Bedloe family is living an ideal, apple-pie existence in Baltimore. Then, in the blink of an eye, a single tragic event occurs that will transform their lives forever--particularly that of seventeen-year-old Ian Bedloe, the youngest son, who blames himself for the sudden "accidental" death of his older brother.
Depressed and depleted, Ian is almost crushed under the weight of an unbearable, secret guilt. Then one crisp January evening, he catches sight of a window with glowing yellow neon, the CHURCH OF THE SECOND CHANCE. He enters and soon discovers that forgiveness must be earned, through a bit of sacrifice and a lot of love....
reviewed Saint Maybe on + 6 more book reviews
Very fun book - everyone will enjoy - good for vacation read.
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Once again Anne Tyler does not disappoint. A great story with believable characters.
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I enjoyed this book about family relationships, both good and bad. I especially liked the interactions between Caleb and Daphne.
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From cover:
In 1965, the happy Bedloe family is living an ideal, apple-pie existence in Baltimore. Then, in the blink of an eye, a single tragic event occurs that will transform their lives forever--particularly that of seventeen-year-old Ian Bedloe, the youngest son, who blames himself for the sudden "accidental" death of his older brother.

Depressed and depleted, Ian is almost crushed under the weight of an unbearable, secret guilt. Then one crisp January evening, he catches sight of a window with glowing yellow neon, the CHURCH OF THE SECOND CHANCE. He enters and soon discovers that forgiveness must be earned, through a bit of sacrifice and a lot of love...