Labor Day (Movie Tie- In Edition)

( 137 )

Overview

As the end of summer approaches and a long, hot Labor Day weekend looms, the life of lonely thirteen-year-old Henry Wheeler is irrevocably changed when he and his emotionally fragile mother show kindness to a stranger with a terrible secret. Now a major motion picture starring Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin, Labor Day is a poignant story of love, sex, adolescence, and devastating treachery.

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Labor Day

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Overview

As the end of summer approaches and a long, hot Labor Day weekend looms, the life of lonely thirteen-year-old Henry Wheeler is irrevocably changed when he and his emotionally fragile mother show kindness to a stranger with a terrible secret. Now a major motion picture starring Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin, Labor Day is a poignant story of love, sex, adolescence, and devastating treachery.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Newsday
Labor Day is suffused with tenderness, dreaminess and love....first and foremost a page-turner...[it] puts back together the world that it destroys....you definitely need to get a box of tissues.”
Washington Post
“It is a testament to Maynard’s skill that she makes this ominous setup into a convincing and poignant coming-of-age tale.”
New Orleans Times-Picayune
“beautifully written”
Associated Press Staff
“Maynard is in top form in this tale of love, betrayal, and forgiveness.”
USA Today
“Maynard offers fresh insight into what constitutes family.”
Booklist
“Maynard’s inventive coming-of-age tale indelibly captures the anxiety and confusion inherent in adolescence, while the addition of a menacing element of suspense makes this emotionally fraught journey that much more harrowing.”
St. Petersburg Times
“an uplifting story told by a boy who is just beginning to understand what life is all about.”
Minneapolis Star Tribune
“[A] sweet, swift read that will leave you feeling good.”
BookPage
“Maynard deftly pulls the reader into the fragile lives of these three vulnerable characters and their preordained march toward the novel’s denouement. A marvelous read––perfect for one long sitting––this novel leaves the reader wishing it didn’t ever have to end.”
Hartford Courant
“a haunting and hopeful story”
Arizona Republic
“surprisingly moving”
Salt Lake City Tribune
“Maynard gets inside the head of an adolescent boy who is grappling with his own identity and the mysteries of sex (while revealing the secrets of making perfect pie crust). ”
Smart Money
“Maynard details Henry’s roller-coaster emotions for Frank – he is both jealous and grateful – and his mother’s emotional journeys – with skill and tenderness for the uncertain willingness of broken hearts to mend. The poignant results are revealing of our ability to forgive and to grow.”
Jodi Picoult
“Joyce Maynard is in top-notch form with Labor Day. From the perfect pitch of a teenaged boy narrator to the eloquent message of how loneliness can bind people together, this is simply a novel you cannot miss.”
NPR.org
“But apart from being a successful thriller, this book is a fascinating portrait of what causes a family to founder, and how much it can cost to put it back on the right path. ”
People (Four Stars)
“[The] story is moving and fast-moving, affirming Maynard’s reputation as a master storyteller and showing her to be a passionate humanist with a gifted ear and heart. . . . Maynard illuminates the human experience.”
www.Gather.com
“Labor Day is a startling novel of love, friendship, trust, treachery, betrayal, and the deep lessons that we learn in life.... It’s a powerful, poignant mix in the hands of author Joyce Maynard and a novel no one should miss.”
www.MyDailyFind.com
“Labor Day is both a coming-of-age story and a love story- a tale of profound loss, redemption and soul searching that is not to be missed.”
BookPage.com on LABOR DAY
“At once beautiful and disturbing, this remarkable novel…is a moving read.”
Wichita Falls
“Maynard spins a fascinating story of damaged people seeking the one thing they long for – love. ”
Record Searchlight (Redding
“Maynard...is in top form in this tale of love, betrayal and forgiveness.”
Newsday
Labor Day is suffused with tenderness, dreaminess and love....first and foremost a page-turner...[it] puts back together the world that it destroys....you definitely need to get a box of tissues.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062313638
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 12/3/2013
  • Edition description: Media Tie
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 50,945
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Joyce Maynard is the author of seven previous novels, including To Die For, Labor Day, and The Good Daughters, and four books of nonfiction. Her bestselling memoir, At Home in the World, has been translated into sixteen languages. Maynard's bestselling novel Labor Day was adapted for film by Academy Award-nominated director Jason Reitman and stars Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin. Maynard makes her home in California.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 137 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(44)

4 Star

(43)

3 Star

(33)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(11)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 137 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A fascinating story of damaged people seeking love and acceptance

    Labor Day weekend, for most, is a time for celebration, a last fling before the seriousness of school and fall set in.

    In Joyce Maynard's new novel, "Labor Day," the holiday weekend is not quite a party for one family in a small New Hampshire town. It will be a time of life-altering occurrences that would shape their futures forever.

    Thirteen year old Henry and his mother, Adele, are shopping for school items when they are approached by a bleeding man asking for their help. So they take him home, to find out later that the man, Frank, is an escaped convict on the run. He somehow cajoles Adele into letting him stay while the police search for him, and she agrees. This would be the beginning of a six-day odyssey for Henry and his mother that neither of them could ever have imagined.

    As the story unfolds, through Henry's voice, the reader is taken through Henry's family history of a bitter divorce, miscarried babies, remarriage and new siblings and his mother's gradual loss of her grip on reality. It seems as if Frank is somewhat of a savior come to turn their lives around. He gives Henry the attention that he craves from a father-figure, and to Adele he gives companionship and adoration that she has been without for so long.

    In a mesmerizing way, Frank weaves his way into their lives, making beautiful promises that he could never keep. When Henry begins to realize that this idyllic situation is doomed, it's up to him, as man of the house, to save his mother from certain heartbreak, if not incarceration.

    Maynard spins a fascinating story of damaged people seeking the one thing they long for - love. It's intriguing to watch these characters go through their paces, all the time wanting to yell at them "don't you know what's going on here?" and "how could you be so stupid?" But wrapping her tale up with a satisfying ending, the reader can take away a sense of completion for Henry's family and that is a gift in itself.

    - Sharon Galligar Chance (http://sharonsgardenofbookreviews.blogspot.com)

    22 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2014

    Harriet klausner

    And here comes harriet klausner with her cliff note book report ruining another book. Please bn, ban this poster and delete all her plot spoiling posts. They totally ruin every book she touches.

    16 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    I Loved This Book!

    I couldn't put this book down! The depth of the characters are great! The story is so sad, yet very touching....I couldn't stop the tears! I really liked the ending! This author is a great writer! Don't miss this one!

    11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2014

    Why

    Why do these people write a review tellingbthe WHOLE story??????? Do they not realize it ruins it for us who havent read it yet? These people should not be allowed to write more than like 100word review!! I am now very disappointed! Thanks again you know who you are you ruin every singke book that you read by writing the whole story in ur review! Well B&N u can thank her for me once again not purchasing ANOTHER book from me!!!!!!! :(

    10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 2, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    This is a story about love, loss and the struggle to find yourself. It's proof that in this great big world, it is possible to find happiness and a place to call home.

    Henry is thirteen-years-old and a bit of a recluse. As the other boys in the neighborhood spend their time outside, Henry spends his time indoors, watching TV and taking care of his divorced mother, Adele. Their meals consist of canned soup and quiet conversation. This is a typical day for them. However, during one, long, hot Labor Day weekend, they head to the local Pricemart to pick up a few items. This, in itself, is rare as Adele does not enjoy being outside anymore. She'd rather stay in the comfort of her home but on this particular morning, she decides to enter the store with Henry.

    While she is shopping, Henry is confronted by a man named Frank. The man, obviously injured, is in pain and simply asks if Henry and his mom can help him. Although Adele has her issues, she has been known to help those in need in the past, so Henry takes Frank to his mom, and their lives change forever.

    Frank has a story of course. A sketchy past involving a mistake he made when he was younger, but through Frank's actions, Adele sees a man who is solid and true. A man who cares deeply for those close to him, and when he manages to bring happiness into their home, happiness that hasn't existed for years, Henry becomes fond of him too.

    Labor Day is a wonderful read. The characters are forced to look within themselves and the interactions between them are so beautifully orchestrated. I say orchestrated because their interactions are seamless and subtle but speak volumes as far as what's going on within these people. It takes an author's delicate hand to push that envelope. Pushing it too much creates a "staged" feel and not pushing it enough creates hollow characters without substance.

    Labor Day is my favorite type of book. It's the kind of book that you read, experience and then once done, think about for days on end. I highly recommend it.

    10 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This is a super character study

    On the Labor day weekend in 1987, thirteen year old Henry persuades his single mother Adele to leave their dump for a trip to the nearby PriceMart. He is ecstatic when she agrees as she never leaves their home except if she absolutely has to since his dad left her and remarried.

    They meet Frank, who bullies them into picking him up. An escaped convict, Frank needs a place to hide from the law so he coerces the mother and son to take him into their home or else. However, as he holds them prisoner in their home, the trio forges a relationship with him in charge. He tenderly ties Adele to a chair using her silk scarves as gentle ropes; while feeding her. He teaches Henry, who hates sports as he stinks at them, to throw a baseball. He soon finds he wants more from the mom as they fall in love and consider fleeing together, and with her son who fears desertion from his mom and his surrogate father.

    This is a super character study that focuses on the changing relations between three protagonists over the Labor Day weekend. A Stockholm syndrome effect occurs as each grows closer to one another. Henry is the glue that keeps the story line focused as he admires Frank's courage and mentoring skills while also fears he will take his mom with him leaving her son behind when he goes on the lam. Fans will relish three seemingly losers finding something special during the long weekend together even as each anticipates no happy ending (the Sword of Damocles always lurking during the holiday) ;instead they expect to pay a steep price for six days and five nights of a fairy tale.

    Harriet Klausner

    10 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2011

    Seriously Flawed, but ....

    Joyce Maynard's Labor Day is a seriously flawed book, a disappointment in so many ways. But... The book is written from the viewpoint of a 13 year old boy except for the last 30 pages. She manages to write that quite convincingly. There seemed to be honesty in the emotions expressed. Some of the characters are three dimensional, though most aren't. So what are the flaws. Frank is a saint, not a bad bone in his body. Everybody has a few bad bones. The timing is far too condensed, only 6 days. But many books that have a romantic edge commit the same error. Then I think the editor should be shot. There were whole chunks of the story that really felt like they had been chopped out. They'd been written and then dropped, particularly some references to baseball. In a particularly egregious error, cellos don't have frets! So the editor thinks that the guitar which Ms. Maynard had originally written was too plebeian. "Let's change it to a cello". At least do the follow up work. But with all of that, the story resolves in better ways than it might have. And there are interests maintained. I can't recommend it. But I can't trash it, despite its flaws.

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2009

    I LOVED THIS BOOK

    STORY WAS VERY TOUCHING AND KEPT ME WANTING MORE. THE STORY STAYED WITH ME A FEW DAYS AFTER I FINISHED THE BOOK.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2013

    Maynard's characters were so real, i could picture them with eas

    Maynard's characters were so real, i could picture them with ease.  Labor day is funny, warm, awakening emotions through the vivid characters.  The author's passions are, indeed, most evident in this wonderful story. 

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    So many great reviews I admit I really struggled through

    This is my first read by this author and thought it was a strong writing style and well developed characters I just really struggled with the story I think. It was hard for me to believe from the beginning and found myself disappointed I guess throughout most of it. The flow is a little weak for me at the end when such a short time of the story is drug on through so many chapters and then BAM we fly through adulthood. I would have rather had a little more leading up to his adult life or nothing at all and ended in his youth, just made it feel too rushed at the end. Hard book for me enjoy, Sorry!

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2009

    LABOR DAY

    GREAT BOOK HARD TO PUT DOWN SOLID CHARACTERS, LOVE IT.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 28, 2009

    Labor Day weekend

    This book is about a mother and her son who let an escaped fugitive into their home for the Labor Day weekend. The mother and son have very few friends. The book centers on how the characters interact with each other while trying to stay as low key as possible. This is a good book about love and forgiveness and well worth reading.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2014

    Anonymous

    I really liked this story. For those who reviewed the book and said it was unbelieveable, isn't that why you read and go to movies? It nice to let go and just enjoy the story. Things don't always have to be authentic to be enjoyable. I would highly recom.end this book.

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2014

    Something lacking

    It took me about 100 pages to get into the book. But even after that, there was still something missing. As a reader, i want a book that as i read it i put myself in a characters situation and i couldn't in this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 13, 2013

    Loved it

    Bought it after I saw a screening of the film. I liked it better. All written in the first person voice of the young boy at the heart of the story, it's an exposition on how love can come even to those that are broken and damaged.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2012

    Okay

    Somewhat slow. 3.5 stars.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 23, 2011

    One of my favorites

    I loved this book. It was great read and held my attention from start to finish. Could barely put it down!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2010

    A Sweet Romance

    This story is about a woman, with her young son, who meets a man in a store and because he needs help, takes him to their home she shares with her son. This is the only unrealistic issue with this book. Her doing this is a contradiction to her carefully raising her son to protect him from some of society's evils. If you can get past this point, it's a lovely story. The mom, boy and man all basically fall in love. As the story twists and turns, you begin to see that this may not work out for any of them, but hang in there and the ending will surprise and delight you. The story is well written and quickly creates empathy for the characters involved. It moves at just the right pace, and I plan on reading other novels by this author. Hope you enjoy it!

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2014

    Labor day

    Ithink i will love it i will read it in 7 days the day my mom and stepdad comes back

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2014

    Good story

    Loved the ending. Didnt want it to end. I will ck out other books by this author.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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