Thursday, September 5, 2019

Julie's Review: Evvie Drake Starts Over

Author: Linda Holmes
Series: None
Publication Date: February 20, 2018
Publisher: Ballatine Books
Pages: 304
Obtained: library
Genre:  Contemporary Fiction
Rating: 4.5/5
Bottom Line: A sweet story about loss, guilt and starting over
Grab, Just get it at the library, or Remove from your TBR list? Grab
Summary: In a sleepy seaside town in Maine, recently widowed Eveleth “Evvie” Drake rarely leaves her large, painfully empty house nearly a year after her husband’s death in a car crash. Everyone in town, even her best friend, Andy, thinks grief keeps her locked inside, and Evvie doesn’t correct them. Meanwhile, in New York City, Dean Tenney, former Major League pitcher and Andy’s childhood best friend, is wrestling with what miserable athletes living out their worst nightmares call the “yips”: he can’t throw straight anymore, and, even worse, he can’t figure out why. As the media storm heats up, an invitation from Andy to stay in Maine seems like the perfect chance to hit the reset button on Dean’s future. When he moves into an apartment at the back of Evvie’s house, the two make a deal: Dean won’t ask about Evvie’s late husband, and Evvie won’t ask about Dean’s baseball career. Rules, though, have a funny way of being broken—and what starts as an unexpected friendship soon turns into something more. To move forward, Evvie and Dean will have to reckon with their pasts—the friendships they’ve damaged, the secrets they’ve kept—but in life, as in baseball, there’s always a chance—up until the last out. 

Review: Evvie has spent the last year hiding out in her house after her husband Tom died in an accident. Everyone thinks it's because she's grief ridden but that's not it, she's guilt ridden. She keeps that to herself though because it's easier to have people thinking something other than the truth. She also keeps to herself that she's struggling financially because that would mean she's have to admit that to herself as well. For Evvie, burying her head is what she thinks is best right now. So when her best friend Andy tell her that he offered up her guest house to his old buddy Dean, she jumps at the chance to have a steady income for some months.

Evvie and Dean hit it off but not before establishing some rules (which you know will be broken) for each other: he can't ask about her husband and she can't ask about his baseball career. They get to know each other through other subject and develop a strong friendship. The move to romance isn't a hard leap for them to make and you definitely see it coming. In fact, I would have thought it was weird if they hadn't actually gone that way.

While the romance might be inevitable between Evvie and Dean, it is because they can be themselves with each other and have always been honest. It's this honesty and realness that allows both of them to start to be honest with themselves.

I thought this was a great read with a bit more depth that I would have initially thought. There is the fact that Evvie is a people pleaser and that means she has always put herself last. Throughout her childhood, as a wife and as a friend. How she comes to understand it and how she starts to put herself first.

If you are looking for a great read, then look no further than Evvie Drake Starts Over.



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