This book is a pleasure to read. Yeah, I had to do it. It's an easy read in that it's a fast read, but not so easy on the emotions. At one point my husband walked in on me reading this book and saw me with tears streaming down my eyes. Not just moist eyes, I mean running rivers of tears! But at other times it makes you smile and warms you insides like a mug of hot cocoa on a cold winter day. It was so good I hardly want to let it go, but it's also so good I have to share it!
I have just found my newest favorite author! I can't even begin to say enough good things about this book! It is a wonderful story about a woman who loses her husband to cancer, and how she learns to live without him. The author has a way of making you think about your life and the everyday things that we take for granted or fail to notice. I even considered not posting this book so that I could keep it with my own treasures, but it seems such a shame to not share it. I hope that those of you who read it enjoy it as much as I did!
This is a warm,sensitive read regarding a widow's journey to living alone after she relocates to a new town. It delves into her establishing new relationships and renewing old ones.A very easy read. I would love another installment of Betta's life a year later.
A beautiful little book about a woman honoring her husband's memory by trying new things after he dies. For another well-written, but true, story of a woman coping with widowhood, try Joan Didion's The Year of Magical Thinking.
Betty Nolan moves to a small town after the death of her husband. It was something they had been planning on doing anyway. She find pleasure and contentment in unexpected ways. Among the ways are from the 10-year old who lives next door, three wild women friends who all use to be roommates, a twenty year old try to find his place in the world and a handsome man ready for love.
At the risk of making the book sound trite, I still have to say it's a heartwarming story. A 55 year old newly widowed woman follows the plan she and her late husband had decided on -to leave Boston and to settle down in a small midwest town. What she does there and who she meets adds up to a very good read indeed!
I enjoyed the story much more at the beginning than at the end. But it was a good story. I felt sorry for the main character, Betta, but not for the obvious reason - that she was a grieving widow. She describes losing someone you love as losing a part of yourself...but, to me, it seemed that she had lost herself long before her husband passed away.
Another wonderful novel from Elizabeth Berg. Bette's beloved husband has died unexpectedly and too young, and she embarks on the painful adventure of redefining her life without him. She moves from Boston to a small town outside of Chicago, and in meeting and connecting with new friends and old, she rediscovers herself. The people who populate this novel are true, and funny, and perverse, and ideosyncratic and a pleasure to spend time with. Berg's writing is full of lovely details and invites you into a world rich in emotions and connections. Just a pleasure to read.
To be honest, I am only about 5-6 chapters into this book, but it keeps taking my breath away, how closely it mirrors my thoughts and experiences as a widow. Beyond being able to relate to the subject matter, her prose is just lovely. I feel just like I am physically where the main character is, as well as emotionally. A beautiful book!
This is my second book by Elizabeth Berg. I loved this more than the first. A well written story of love, lost and starting over. A short read I would recommend for anyone to start with Elizabeth Berg.
I did not want this book to end because I was ready to keep on experiencing the joy if life with all of the characters. It's about a woman whose husband dies and the mending that she experiences along with her grief. A book about joy and friendship.
This book is, unfortunately, not very believable. A new widow sells and moves across country about six weeks after the death of her beloved husband. An accomplished writer, she seems to have almost no other relationships--either friends or family. With one phone call she reconnects with long ignored college friends, almost immediately finds a man she tries to sleep with, and within about 3 months opens a store with the help of her old friends, none of whom live remotely nearby. She tries to present a picture of bereavement and the power of friendship, but it needs to be presented more realistically. She should also know that a maple seed won't flutter to the ground on its delicate wings in December!
This book gave me a lot to think about with my own life. I could not put it down. First book I have read by this author and now I am on the search for everything she has written. Wonderful story. Can be hard to read for some (parts of this were hard for me), but very worthwhile. I highly recommend this book and this author.
This is a sweet story about a woman beginning her life after the death of her husband. She takes many chances, relocates old friends and learns a lot about herself. The only thing I found distracting about Berg's writing was her tendency to write in long lists...descriptions of meals, what people were wearing, all the things she saw in a store. It was lyrical but boring at times. Still, a good book to read or listen to, especially if you like EB's work.
I thoroughly enjoyed the book. It is one of the few books that I've read on losing a loved one (a scary concept in my mind) that ended reassuringly - life has to go on and sometimes there is life after...
Wow, this is my first from this author, but, it is not my last. This is a story of starting over, of living dreams and of living the way one wants to live. To be able to pick up some pointers from this book is a plus I look forward to. Enjoy this one, then, order more of hers! I am!!
Seemed like an abrupt end with a quick wrap up that's incongruous with the detail of the rest of the story. But it's a pleasurable read that keeps you interested more in the thoughts and observations of the main character than the events.
This is another excellent novel by Elizabeth Berg. I belive that it especially hit home because I have often wondered what would happen if I were suddenly a widow (my husband is also John, so there were some weepy moments). If you enjoy Berg, you won't be disappointed.
Story about a woman whose husband dies and the decisions they made before he passes away about what she should do afterwards. It was decided that she should not use the next year to grieve but to do all the things they had always wanted to do. Good read, nice story.
This book is about a recently, I think fifty-something, widowed woman who moves to a new town to start a new life. Apparently she and her husband had done well because she could afford to start over. Good for her ! She makes new friends along the way including the little boy and his mom that live next door and a troubled twenty-something young man. She reunites with her college friends and finally understands a message that her deceased husband left for her. At times it was a little hokey, outbursts with college friends from a mature woman, but it was entertaining.
This is a story of women who looses her husband and how she has to start her life again without him, and then on top of all that moves to another town and how she makes new friends, and reconnects to old ones.
Maybe it was because I've had several friends who've lost their spouse, but I loved this book. Life is for the living and I loved the way this character respectfully moved on with her life and created a new future.
A delightful book about love, lost and finding your way. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and found the subject matter thought provoking. The book centers around a woman's self-discovery of life after her husbands death. If I review the book further I might give away the ending and I wouldn't want to spoil the book for anyone. It was a wonderful read and maybe because I was the same age as the main character it really spoke to me. What happens when the love of your life dies and you are left to carry on unfortunately, we all must face this question sometime in our life. Do you carry on and make a new life or do you turn bitter and curl up and wither away? As hard as it will be I hope that I would be able to find a purpose in my life and a way to carry on. Carrying on doesn't mean forgetting.
I'm only giving this book three stars because I found the ending to be very weak. Berg spent most of the book building up the story of a childless widow who moves from Boston to a small Midwest town, the new friends she makes, and old friends she reconnects with. At what felt to me like the middle of the story, she suddenly begins a wrap-up that skips several months and leaves too many loose ends.
That "first half" was a comfortable and somewhat luxurious read, like the "pleasures" (good food, beautiful things, etc.) from which the title is taken.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story of a newly widowed woman finding her way toward her future by going off in search of adventures and pleasures. It's well written, and the emotions expressed are very real - I sometimes found myself crying right along with her!
This book was enjoyable, but almost too "over-written"- every few sentences was another flashback for the main character; after awhile it got to be a little much. Also I felt the ending could have been a little more important- the book just kind of trailed off. I liked her other book, "we are all welcome here," much more.
I had not read Berg's books for several years but after reading this one, I plan to read all of them. A wonderfully written novel of a woman rebuilding and reconnecting her life after the death of her husband. Such rich writing. Five stars
Nicely written, simple story of a 55 yr old widow who packs up and moves to another town. Memories of her late husband float through the story as she begins to start a new life. The ending disappointed me, however. None of the loose ends of the story were tied. It almost begs for a sequel.
A quick beach read.
Elizabeth Berg's novel is an unforgettable piece that will leave the reader laughing and choking back tears. At times, I found it hard to read the book, especially when Betta is describing the life she had before her husband John died. The memories are so intrinsically written, the reader will feel as if they are reliving it too. Throughout the book, I would be overcome with feelings of wanting to grab Betta and just tell her that she will make it through and life will get better. I would recommend this book to anyone who has had a tragedy in their life (who hasn't?) or who has ever lost a loved one. The book can get depressing but it still has a good plot. I read it in about 3 1/2 hours, so it isn't too long.
My mother and I both read this book, and we both loved it! You get sucked right into the main character's life and can't wait to find out what happens in her life. The book is well-written and engaging. This book will be the first of many Berg books I will read!
A Year of Pleasures was a warm, comforting read for me. It brought to the surface the memories of the most important man in my life for many years - my father. The book is not about losing a parent but a spouse yet the process is similar. I found myself recalling wonderful incidents and experiences that lay deep in my heart. I cried as I read the story - not for the book, not for myself but for what I had lost. Yet, I had not lost as much as I thought. His smile, his laughter, his sparkling eyes, his brusque manner and and his quick rambling step will remain in my heart forever. Thank you Elizabeth Berg!
Elizabeth Berg knows how to let us in to the world of this widow who recently lost her husband. She's honest about the sorrows of loss, but she also portrays how to go it with hope. She's very vivid in her descriptions. On the first few pages she may go heavy on description, but soon it just mixes in so well and becomes secondary to the action.
I recommend it highly
Bette Noval moves to a small town after the death of her husband to try to being anew. Pursuing a dream of a different kind of lie, she is determined to find pleasure in her simple daily routines. Among those who help her in both expected and unexpected ways are the ten-year olf boy next door, three wild woman friends from her college days, a 20-year-old who is struggling to find his place in the world, and a handsome man ready for love. A compassionate tale of a woman starting her life over...Quietly, and gracefully, Berg shows a woman emerging...with a new sense of purpose. New York Times Bestseller