The Last Time I Was Me

( 87 )

Overview

I wrapped up my grandmother's tea cup collection and my mother's china, then grabbed a violin I'd hidden way back in my closet that made me cry, a gold necklace with a dolphin that my father gave me two weeks before he died of a heart attack when I was twelve and, at midnight, with that moon as bright as the blazes, I left Chicago.

When Jeanne Stewart stops at The Opera Man's Cafe in Weltana, Oregon, to eat pancakes for the first time in twelve years, she has no idea she's also ...

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Overview

I wrapped up my grandmother's tea cup collection and my mother's china, then grabbed a violin I'd hidden way back in my closet that made me cry, a gold necklace with a dolphin that my father gave me two weeks before he died of a heart attack when I was twelve and, at midnight, with that moon as bright as the blazes, I left Chicago.

When Jeanne Stewart stops at The Opera Man's Cafe in Weltana, Oregon, to eat pancakes for the first time in twelve years, she has no idea she's also about to order up a whole new future. It's been barely a week since she succumbed to a spectacularly public nervous breakdown in front of hundreds of the nation's most important advertising and PR people. Jeanne certainly had her reasons--her mother's recent death, the discovery that her boyfriend had been sleeping with a dozen other women, and the assault charges that resulted when Jeanne retaliated in a creative way against him, involving condoms and peanut oil.

Now, en route to her brother's house in Portland, Jeanne impulsively decides to spend some time in picturesque Weltana. Staying at a B&B run by the eccentric, endearing Rosvita, she meets a circle of quirky new friends at her court-ordered Anger Management classes. Like Jeanne, all of them are trying to become better, braver versions of themselves. Yet the most surprising discoveries are still to come--a good man who steadily makes his way into her heart and a dilapidated house that with love and care might be transformed into something wholly her own, just like the new life she is slowly building, piece by piece.

As heartfelt as it is hilarious, The Last Time I Was Me is a warm, wise novel about breaking down, opening up, and finally letting go of everything we thought we should be, in order to claim the life that has been waiting all along.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

The author of Julia's Chocolatesdelivers a sometimes fun tale of revenge and rebirth that begins when narrator Jeanne Stewart discovers her longtime live-in boyfriend has been cheating on her. She exacts a creative revenge involving condoms and peanut oil (her boyfriend is allergic), resulting in "Slick Dick" suing her. His betrayal, following the death of her mother and weeks of working excessive hours, results in an embarrassing public nervous breakdown. Jeanne sells everything and lands in a small Oregon town, where, amid an eccentric cast, she enrolls in a court-ordered anger-management class and attempts to rebuild her life. Her initial recovery breakthrough occurs when she falls while running naked (this, strangely, is part of the program) along the river and a nice man helps her. When her brother urges Jeanne to work on a political campaign for Oregon's governor, Jeanne discovers the candidate is her river rescuer. Other irons in the fire include Jeanne's efforts to renovate a derelict house and her ex's looming lawsuit. Though initially charming, the book has a tendency to overload the narrative with sass and excessive wordplay, which slows the plot and keeps the reader at an uncomfortable distance. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780758214638
  • Publisher: Kensington
  • Publication date: 7/30/2013
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 223,422
  • Product dimensions: 5.72 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 1.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Cathy Lamb lives in Oregon. She is married with three children. She writes late at night when it's just her and the moon and a few shooting stars.
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Read an Excerpt

I wrapped up my grandmother's tea cup collection and my mother's china, t, a gold necklace with a dolphin that my father gave me two weeks b was twelve and, at midnight, with that moon as bright as the blazes, I left Chicago.

When Jeanne Stewart stops at T C in Weltana, Oregon, to eat pancakes f, she has no idea she's also about to order up a whole new future. It's been barely a week since she succumbed to a spectacularly public nervous breakdown in front of hundreds of t most important advertising and PR people. Jeanne certainly had her reasons-her mother's recent death, the discovery that her boyfriend had been sleeping with a dozen other women, a the assault charges that resulted when Jeanne retaliated in a creative way ai

Now, en route to her brother's house in Portland, Jeanne impulsively decides to spend some time in picturesque Weltana. Staying at a B&B run by the eccentric, endearing Rosvita, she meets a circle of q new friends at her court-ordered Anger Management classes. Like Jeanne, all of them are trying to become better, braver versions of themselves. Y the most surprising discoveries are still to come-a good man who steadily makes his way into her heart and a dilapidated house that with l might be transformed into something wholly her own, just like the new life she is slowly building, piece by piece.

As heartfelt as it is hilarious, The Last Time I Was Me is a warm, wise novel about breaking down, opening up, and finally letting go of everything we thought we should be, in order to claim the l that has been waiting all along.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 87 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(54)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(8)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(5)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 87 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2008

    MY OH MY...I read about 10 books a week and this one is a KEEPER!

    Go ahead and order her 'Julia's Chocolate' (first book) because by the time you finish the first 100 pages you'll want it waiting for you to pick up next. So well developed, characters that you'll wish you could be just like, characters you¿ll really relate to, you'll laugh and cry, you'll stop to think, you¿ll learn about yourself, you'll see the movie going through your head as you read, descriptions are amazing ¿not too long ¿ not too short, why you can smell things as you read for goodness sakes. This is a book that a thinking man would enjoy so my husband gets it next. I won't loan this one out. Literally one of the very best, in my top 10 for sure, written books I've read in a long while. And the way she repeats is such an intelligent way to anchor the readers...makes me wonder if she attended NLP classes. The title evokes an interesting sound from people when you say it...how many of us know ¿The Last Time I Was Me¿?

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted April 30, 2008

    a charming character study

    Mourning the death of her mother, Jeanne Stewart is outraged to find out her boyfriend ¿Slick Dick¿ has been cheating on her. Irate Jeanne obtains revenge on her live in lover when she mixes peanut oil that he is allergic to with his condoms. His reaction is to sue her. With her personal life in tatters, her professional life melts also when she suffers a nervous breakdown.---------------- Jeanne closes her mom¿s Chicago home and taking a violin and a gold dolphin necklace her dad gave her just before he died, she leaves and heads to her brother¿s home in Portland, Oregon stopping to have pancakes at the Opera Man¿s café in Weltana. She begins her recuperation by signing onto an anger management class as required by the court. Running naked as the class requires, she stumbles but a kind man helps her. At her brother¿s urging, Jeanne works on the PR campaign of a gubernatorial candidate the man who rescued her when she fell running. The Slickster she left behind in the Midwest is considering a lawsuit.--------------- THE LAST TIME I WAS ME is a charming character study of a grieving woman using a betrayal to find herself. The story line overall is fun to follow, but at times Jeanne turns chick lit chic responses that feel out of place for her. Still fans will cheer Jeanne on as she seeks to find her misplaced groove.-------------- Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted July 21, 2008

    LOVED IT!!!!

    I love,love,loved this book. Funny, witty, and quick!! If you like Kristin Hannah and Lisa Wingate, you'll want to read this one!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 19, 2015

    Another wonderful read!! I've been lucky enuff to find her books

    Another wonderful read!! I've been lucky enuff to find her books late, so got them all at once & read them back to back! Wonderful

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

    Posted February 6, 2015

    I cried and laughed and cried and laughed

    This was a great book. The characters were so interesting, which made me enjoy the book.

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

    Posted August 7, 2014

    ShAdOwFiRe?

    YoUv'E bEeN rOlEpLaYiNg FoReVeR!

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

    Posted April 9, 2014

    Silverdapple &delta

    SHADOWFIRE!SHADOWFIRE!

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

    Posted April 8, 2014

    Dewstar's Announcement ※

    Dewstar padded in to the center of the camp and jumped onto the highstone. She sat down and curled her tail around her paws. "Let all cats old enough to catch their own prey gather around the Highstone for a clan meeting." Her voice rang throughout the camp. "Tonight I will chose my deputy." She started. "I say these words before Starclan, so that the spirits of our warrior ancestors may hear and approve of my choice. The new deputy of Cloudclan is Shadowfire." She ended her speech and looked around. There were yowls of approval and cats were chanting, "SHADOWFIRE! SHADOWFIRE!" She stood up. "The clan is dismissed." She said. Then she jumped down from the Highstone.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 30, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    This is Great!

    After reading heavy, sometimes extremely violent modern day novels I have to slip back and read something from the past. This is just the answer. Zane Grey paints the West with words and scribes a good and human adventure. This story tells of mistakes when one is young and has to live with and learn to eventually redeem oneself.

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

    Posted August 12, 2013

    This book was great

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

    Posted October 13, 2012

    amazing humor!

    I love the humor in this book! It made me laugh out loud countless times!! I like the way she developed all of the characters in the anger management class, it really added dimension to the story.

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

    Posted July 1, 2012

    Love, love, loved it

    Once again Cathy Lamb pulls me in!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 18, 2012

    Loved this book. Its another wonderful book. Laughed, cried, lau

    Loved this book. Its another wonderful book. Laughed, cried, laughed again!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 7, 2012

    This is a great Laugh out Loud story

    I loved this book. There were several times I was laughing out loud and had to stop and read a section out loud to my husband. It is a feel good book that I have read several times and when I lend it out I make sure I get it back cause it is always a good read.

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

    Posted December 1, 2011

    Menace to society

    Was this a Lindsay Lohan biography? Could have been good....I did finish the book...but it was waaay to much unbelievable things happening. Women may get anrgy....we may get crazy...some may be tacky....but come on!!!! Really?!

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

    Posted September 13, 2011

    VERY good book!!

    i read this book in three days! i couldn't put it down! amazing story!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 27, 2011

    A "you go girl!" book

    Wonderfully exciting story about a woman who hits rock bottom and fights like hell to overcome it. The main character openly shares with the reader the inside of a woman's thoughts (kinda scary at times) . This story was an easy, enjoyable read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 9, 2011

    Pure entertainmet

    She makes you feel ok about being human and gives you the strength to power through.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 5, 2011

    My fav!

    This was my first book from cathy and loved the way she writes Hope to see another great in july hehe Plus shes my aunts best friend! <3

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  • Posted April 18, 2011

    Amazing story with wonderful characters!!

    I was harrassed into reading this by a friend who said I read too many supernatural i.e. vampire, stories. After the first few chapters, I told the friend that although I was reading the book it was missing the vampires but there were plenty of demons. This is a story of a woman who is haunted by inner-demons while she appears to the casual observer to be a successful professional in a solid relationship. The facade crumbles when she is finally confronted by her boyfriends multiple indiscretions. She reacts in a way most woman scorned would love to react, the full depths of which you don't learn until the end of the book. She quits her 6 figure job in a blaze of very public diatribe about the advertising profession, she sells her condo and possessions and starts driving west, ending up in Oregon. She drinks too much, she cusses too much but she does take her legal jam back home seriously. Because she is being sued by her former lover for the "emotional pain and suffering" that he endured at her hand. She enrolls in anger managment classes with a new-age counselor. She and her course mates are hilarious and pathetic all at the same time. Her acerbic wit throughout is almost a character itself. The story is fascinating. The characters are well developed, quirky ad lovable. I highly recommend this book to everyone from every walk of life.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 87 Customer Reviews

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