Customer Reviews for

Almost: A Novel

Average Rating 3.5
( 9 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
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  • Posted June 27, 2012

    a great story and a great book. the writing is different and gre

    a great story and a great book. the writing is different and great. totally enjoyed it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 16, 2012

    No conclusions here :)

    I thought this was a lovingly drawn little tale about grief, loss and how life can knock us flat with those two emotions when we least expect it, and we usually don't get any explanation.

    This was my first novel by this author and I liked her main character's self-deprecating humor very much. Another reviewer complained about the one dimensional stereotypes and, in particular, the hangover scene. Personally, I found the hangover scene very funny. Not too many of us who CAN'T relate to having been in this very situation and the character's inability to think straight because of the hangover simply underscored what I think is the author's purpose is in this book.

    I am fairly certain that all of these characters were purposefully drawn in simple sketches of words. To have become deeply involved in the lives of any of these characters would have been to have missed the point. NONE of these people--not a single one we meet can be said to have finished with or drawn epiphanal conclusions about their lives.

    After all, the name of the book is Almost and the coroner's report is (spoiler alert here!!) inconclusive. We almost get to know Sophy--but only just enough to know that she doesn't really know what she wants or how she is "supposed" to feel about the death of her almost ex husband. What happens to Mavis and Evan is, well, titillating but inconclusive as well. Henderson is the gay best friend who hints at depth, but hints are all we get. The enigmatic Crystal's story is unfinished, and even the deceased himself leaves letters and business unfinished.

    Again, I am certain that this vagueness is on purpose--used to highlight the fact that life is so often a collection of unfinished conversations and/or relationships, tied together in the best way we know how, but most often unexplanable or inconclusive on the part of those of us who are living in the middle of it.

    This is what I think makes this book so interesting--it starts in the middle and leaves us in the middle and even the ending is happy....almost. Definitely worth the read (and frustration!).

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2009

    Very enjoyable read

    Great read. I enjoyed the suspenseful aspects of the story and useful interjection of humor. Great beach/rainy day read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 11, 2005

    Very disappointing

    I was very disappointed with this book. I read this book only after reading Benedict's 'The Practice of Deceit' which was a great book and I couldn't put it down. This one, however, was slow-paced, boring, and when you think it's going to get better it doesn't.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2004

    A worthwhile read.

    This book may not change your life, but it is thought provoking. It makes the reader think about the ambiguities of life, love, and death.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2002

    Badly written, without emotional impact

    From the first sentence, I found the style to be self-consiously inelegant, like a high schooler who feels full of daring by throwing in the occasional profanity and sex scene. There is a myriad of painful similes, and the triteness of the hangover scene has to be read to be believed. The shallowness of the writing contributes toward a complete lack of emotional impact in a story line that could be rich with the traumas of death and separation. The cast of supporting characters is a kaleidoscope of one-dimensional stereotypes, where all of the seemingly successful people are full of torment, and the only decent men are the perfectly understanding gay neighbor and the back-to-nature chap. The book ends (as was obvious all along) with nothing solved, leaving a sense of the ultimate futility of interpersonal relationships and life itself.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2001

    An intense, gripping ride

    Almost is a completely gripping experience. The book pulled me along compulsively, made me laugh out loud, had breathtaking sentences, and lots of emotion and drive. A combination of great writing and great enjoyment.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2001

    A fine and suspenseful read

    Elizabeth Benedict has written a novel both fun to read and worth reading. She is a master of her craft, and in this novel she manages to combine a mystery narrative with the story of a woman looking for the meaning of her own life.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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