Ever since I saw the cover, I was intrigued. The blurb sounded fantastic and the reviews were amazing – there was no doubt I would be picking it up. I just had to decide on the format. Physical book or audiobook.
Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes
In a small town in Maine, recently widowed Eveleth “Evvie” Drake rarely leaves her house. Everyone in town, including her best friend, Andy, thinks grief keeps her locked inside, and she doesn’t correct them. In New York, Dean Tenney, former major-league pitcher and Andy’s childhood friend, is struggling with a case of the “yips”: he can’t throw straight anymore, and he can’t figure out why. An invitation from Andy to stay in Maine for a few months seems like the perfect chance to hit the reset button.
When Dean 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. But before they can find out what might lie ahead, they’ll have to wrestle a few demons: the bonds they’ve broken, the plans they’ve changed, and the secrets they’ve kept. They’ll need a lot of help, but in life, as in baseball, there’s always a chance–right up until the last out.
This is my choice for the category of Armchair traveler: Read a book set in a destination you want to visit.
Have you ever had a book that makes you feel good?
Evvie Drake Starts Over was one of them. From beginning to end of the audiobook (even though I have the hardcover edition, I decided to try the audiobook, since I received it so quickly from the library), I was smiling and just feeling good about this story.
It’s definitely a romance, a slow burn, but it’s also so much more. It’s about friendships, about loss, about mental health issues, a journey of personal rediscovery, of letting go, and of moving on.
This debut novel touched me in the best way. And gave me 9 hours of feel good vibes that made this book unputdownable. Or in my case I walked and stayed in my car for far longer than planned. Those are the best kind of audiobook experiences, when I stay in my car even after I get home after a long day of work, and don’t want to stop listening.
The friendships between Evvie and Dean, Evvie and Andy were the soul and heart about this story. I loved all three equally, and cheered them on from the sidelines.
Throughout the entire novel, the dialogues really jumped out to me. I felt like I got to know everyone really well. Their dynamic, personality and backstory, just by the way they were talking to each other. Most often, Evvie and Dean’s rapport was everything, and really carried the story.
This book isn’t super deep or life changing, but it’s an easy, light and feel good novel that is perfect for summer, and between heavier books. The setting, the characters, the story all are well developed, beautifully written and made for an awesome debut novel. I’m excited to see what the author has in store for us next.
Evvie Drake Starts Over – Linda Holmes