The First Warm Evening of the Year: A Novel

The First Warm Evening of the Year: A Novel

3.1 8
by Jamie M. Saul
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Following his extraordinary debut novel, Light of Day (“An exhilarating emotional roller-coaster ride” —Washington Post), author Jamie Saul now explores the intricate relationships between friends and siblings, husbands and wives.

The First Warm Evening of the Year is a breathtakingly beautiful, wonderfully resonant, and

See more details below

Overview

Following his extraordinary debut novel, Light of Day (“An exhilarating emotional roller-coaster ride” —Washington Post), author Jamie Saul now explores the intricate relationships between friends and siblings, husbands and wives.

The First Warm Evening of the Year is a breathtakingly beautiful, wonderfully resonant, and gorgeously evocative story that demonstrates how true love can be discovered in the most unexpected places. Finely wrought, character-driven literary fiction that packs an emotional wallop, Saul’s The First Warm Evening of the Year is for anyone who has ever been powerfully affected by a novel by Chris Bohjalian, Joyce Maynard, or Scott Spencer…and for everyone who adores getting lost in a great story.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This talky, intimate look at grief and lost relationships begins with the death of Laura Wells, a music teacher in a small upstate New York town. Geoffrey Tremont, her old college friend, is enlisted to execute her will, despite not having seen her in decades. When he travels to her hometown, he meets her best friend, Marian Ballantine, who is still consumed with grief over the loss of her husband 10 years before. They’re immediately attracted to each other, but as each is involved with someone else, they have to decide what they’re willing to sacrifice—and how vulnerable they can be—in order to get together. In Saul’s latest novel (after Light of Day), characters negotiate the processes of loving, grieving, and healing in different ways, but they do so often in long conversations overburdened with psychoanalysis, making for difficult going at times. Still, there’s much to make this novel compelling. Agent: Joy Harris. (May)
Anniston Star
“One of the most satisfying and poignant novels readers will come across this year.”
Kirkus Reviews
In Saul's second novel (Light of Day, 2005), a 40-ish man faces the lack of passion in his life when he becomes the executor of a college friend's estate. Geoffrey lives in Manhattan where he earns a living doing voice-overs and carries on a no-strings relationship with his girlfriend. One day he gets a call from a lawyer; his old friend Laura has died and he's been named executor of her small estate. When Geoffrey knew Laura, he was at Columbia and she was at Juilliard. She moved to Paris with her husband, fellow jazz musician Steve, but when he died nine years ago, she moved back to her upstate New York hometown and taught music. Geoffrey drives up there and soon meets her best friend Marian, who also happens to be a widow. Narrator Geoffrey announces on the second page that he has fallen in love with Marian at first sight. The only problem is that Marian has a boyfriend she doesn't even pretend she loves. Eliot runs the local hardware store and doesn't like to discuss feelings (readers will sympathize after hundreds of pages of Geoffrey's navel gazing). Marian uses their relationship to avoid feeling the kind of passion she had with her husband Buddy. Instead, since Buddy's death, she has been clinging to his memory and her grief. She and Laura bonded as "the young widows." It is less clear why Geoffrey has avoided emotional commitment, although he and his gay psychiatrist brother Alex certainly discuss their avoidance enough--at least until Alex meets and falls immediately in love with Laura's wayward brother Simon, whom Laura and Geoffrey conspired to keep from attending her wedding long ago. By then Geoffrey and Marian are talking nonstop about their emotions. For a guy who claims to be out of touch with his capacity for feelings, Geoffrey is the most touchy-feeling fictional hero since Oliver Barrett IV, the main character in Erich Segal's bestseller Love Story. This talky love story will turn the most romantic reader into a curmudgeon.
John Searles
“A heartfelt examination of one man’s grief with a dark and intriguing mystery pulsating beneath the surface.”
Sena Jeter Naslund
“Like an arrow to the heart, Jamie Saul’s page-turner novel sears through the psyche to hit bedrock.”
Harlan Coben
“LIGHT OF DAY is a haunting, beautifully-written and heart-wrenching debut.”
Jacquelyn Mitchard
“From its poignant opening chapter to its breathtaking conclusion, nothing about this writer or book is less than extraordinary.”
Booklist on THE FIRST WARM EVENING OF THE YEAR
“Fans of gentle reads will enjoy the strong focus on relationships and the slow build between Marian and Geoffrey.”
O: the Oprah Magazine
“In this engaging novel, a Manhattan man finds romance—and a few other surprises—when he goes to settle the estate of an old friend.” (#1 Pick)
Shelf Awareness
“A beautifully rendered, psychologically astute novel about the risks—and joys—of love and loving.”
Booklist
"This first novel rivals Jacquelyn Mitchard’s Deep End of the Ocean as a probing exploration into the psychology of grief . . . a gorgeous literary thriller of the highest caliber."
YourHoustonNews.com
“[T]he story flows quickly...Saul’s writing and vocabulary are sophisticated and learned.”
the Oprah Magazine O
“In this engaging novel, a Manhattan man finds romance—and a few other surprises—when he goes to settle the estate of an old friend.” (#1 Pick)
Lincoln Journal Star (Nebraska)
“How does a novel become a work of classic literature? My betting is that this first novel by a new author will eventually be seen that way. . . . Anyone who wants in on the ground floor of that decision should grab the book now.”
Arizona Republic
It’s the mystery of what happened to Danny that will carry you through this book . . .The ending is a reminder that we are heartbreakingly vulnerable through our children.”
Bookreporter.com
“A moving and elegant novel that lingers with the reader long after the last page is turned.”
Washington Post Book World
“Exhilarating. . . .One of those debut novels that delivers the goods with style and compassion.”
Indianapolis Star
“Powerful . . . [An] intense first achievement . . .difficult to put down”
Winston-Salem Journal
“Heartbreaking and well-written.”
Booklist (starred review)
“This first novel rivals Jacquelyn Mitchard’s Deep End of the Ocean as a probing exploration into the psychology of grief . . . a gorgeous literary thriller of the highest caliber.”
Orlando Sentinel
“A bold and impressive debut . . . In a gripping tour de force by a writer supremely confident of his vision, Saul leaves us stunned and breathless, waiting for the next chapter in what one hopes will be a long and illustrious career.”
Terre Haute (Indiana) Tribune-Star
“Saul controls his material with almost flawless skill. . . . A fine thriller, stocked with solid, effective characters and characterizations.”
Chicago Tribune Books
“An intellectual thriller laced with subtle clues throughout its gracious prose.”

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061449727
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
04/24/2012
Pages:
297
Product dimensions:
6.32(w) x 9.18(h) x 1.00(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Jamie M. Saul was born and raised in New York City. He has written for various magazines, including People and Playboy. A two-time guest professor at Yale University, he was the recipient of the Poynter Fellowship. He is the author of the novel Light of Day. He lives in a small town in the Hudson Valley.

More from this Author

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >