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Leaving Cold Sassy

3.17  ·  Rating Details ·  2,986 Ratings  ·  350 Reviews
Cold Sassy Tree, Olive Ann  Burns unforgettable story of a Georgia town at the  turn of the century, has captivated millions of  readers with its tale of Grandpa Blakeslee, his young  bride Miss Love, and the irrepressible fiteen-year-old Will Tweedy. Throughout her long battle with cancer, Olive Ann Burns worked passionately on a sequel to this magical book. Only during h ...more
Paperback, 309 pages
Published February 1st 1994 by Delta (first published 1992)
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Jun 28, 2008 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wish I hadn't read it. It was a little depressing. It was Will, as an adult. Instead of just the one summer of his youth, it was compressed version of his adulthood and had a dark tone. Also, it is half book, half about the author. She died while she was trying to finish it. It was told in the second, that she was is bed, practically the entire time she was writing it. I'm sure that is the reason it was so drastically different. However, it is worth reading Cold Sassy Tree. If you are happy to ...more
This book is half fiction, half biography.

The fiction consists of the unfinished sequel that Olive Ann Burns wrote, but was unable to finish before her death. The biography is written by her publisher, who developed a close relationship with Burns and her husband, Andy Sparks.

As expected, the fiction of the unfinished work, is good, but not as polished as Cold Sassy Tree, and inspite of Olive Ann Burns' efforts, still leaves the reader with a lack of completion regarding what happens to Will Tw
Jul 18, 2008 Andrea rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 02, 2014 Kim rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014-reads
This book made me sad. Really only about a third of it was written by Olive Ann Burns because she died before she could complete the sequel to Cold Sassy Tree. The rest of the book is a reminiscence about Burns, written by her editor. She sounds like she was an amazing person who had the gift of acceptance, of making the best of things as they are - like beginning to write a novel as a way to take her mind off being diagnosed with cancer. Who does that? Inspiring but still so sad.
I liked the beginning of the unfinished book however I'm not sure about the rest of the plot. The final outcome of the plot I like but getting there I'm not crazy about. I liked the reminiscence about the author Olive Ann in some ways more than her unfinished second book.
I really liked her father's (Will's model) advise and it sounded a lot like grandpa "Olive proudly proclaimed herself a liberal and was adamant about her opinions, which she aired at every opportunity. Her father told her she wa
Apr 22, 2015 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At first I was disappointed with this book. I didn't like where the author took some of the characters from Cold Sassy Tree and was discontented with the fact that there was no ending. However, reading the second half of the book- a reminiscence from the author's editor- was delightful. She explains the theme that the author had planned to instill in the book and how the characters would end up. She also shares the family history of the author and the real-life people who the characters were pat ...more
Aug 06, 2008 Jaime rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An unfinished sequel, well, it leaves you feeling unfinished. What I really liked about this book was reading the "reminiscence" from the editor. What an amazing woman Olive Ann Burns was! I'd read another book just on her.
Bonnie Atkinson
This work perfectly exemplifies why authors finish works and why it matters. There is a lot of smoothing, a lot of guidance that occurs in that editing portion of a work in progress and I discovered that the narrative isn't important enough to me to skip that. I felt the same way about The Last Four Years when I read it as a girl. It was a different story when the author didn't guide it through the last stages of production. It was an entirely different story.

I loved Burns' characters but traged
Mar 17, 2017 Lola rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I loved reading "Cold Sassy Tree" so I was eager to start reading this sequel. Burns wrote fifteen chapters but then she died of cancer in 1990 after working on the sequel for five years. After her
death, notes written on envelopes and scraps of paper were found all over her house.
Katrina Kenison is an auth0r & was a friend to Olive Burns. Kenison gathered the notes & tried to write the story h0w Burns might have. For the most part, though, she wrote about the life of Burns and her husban
Wm Bell
Jul 09, 2017 Wm Bell rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Chapters that were a continuation from Cold Sassy were good. I had hoped that the author that had "continued" the draft that Ms. Burns had started before her death would have completed the book based on Ms. Burns' notes. I understand how hard that would have been to do and what big shoes she would have had to fill, but the story deserved a good ending and could have been done with proper caveats. To me that would have been much better that just referencing the notes and doing a biography of ...more
May 08, 2017 Terris rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this unfinished sequel to Cold Sassy Tree. I only gave it 3 stars because it ends abruptly. But I love the story of Cold Sassy Tree, so much fun, and so many entertaining characters and situations! It was interesting to see the main character, Will Tweedy, ten years after the ending of the first book, and see where his life was headed, even though there was no ending because of the author's death.
Kaylee Tanner
Jan 11, 2017 Kaylee Tanner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
All I can do is cry about the unfairness of the universe and swear to never again get hooked on an author who died before they could finish their wonderful stories. (*cough*Douglas Adams*cough*) This book doesn't have the same level of hilarious dialogue and stellar descriptions of small-town life as the original, I think because it was a rough draft. However it was completely worth the read just to know what happened to all those characters I loved so much.
Jul 11, 2017 Sandy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
The author died before she could finish the book, but it was published none the less. It seemed disjointed, didn't flow well, the new characters were not developed...but that was explained as Olive Burns was still considering different avenues to take in the storyline. It just didn't have the same love of characters, & pull in the story as Cold Sassy Tree.
Cricket Muse
When the first novel is such a wondrous favorite, it's natural to hope for a sequel. Sometimes it's best to keep the first untainted. We learned that with To Kill a Mockingbird.
Leaving Cold Sassy Tree really isn't a sequel--it's a loving patchwork of author notes compiled by a dedicated editor. While appreciated, it's not the novel readers hoped for. Starts and stops in the plot, questions unanswered, frustrating foreshadowing, gapping flashbacks make it difficult to follow a story that is going
Jun 25, 2011 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book: Leaving Cold Sassy: The Unfinished Sequel to Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns
Rating: 3/5
Why did you include it to your Book Bucket List?: Having read the first book, Cold Sassy Tree by the author, I, like many of its other readers, was interested in finding out what happened to the characters in the story. I like continuing sagas, and was hoping the sequel would be just as good, if not better, than the first book.
Was it worth it?: Yes and No ~ as it turns out, the author died during the
Jul 11, 2009 Jill rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american-lit
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 01, 2010 Elizabeth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cold Sassy Tree fans
Shelves: fiction
While I didn't feel like this book was as good as Cold Sassy Tree, I did enjoy it. It just wasn't the same, but that's ok. I believe that if Olive Ann had lived longer, it would be an undoubtedly better story since she'd have had time to fine tune everything. I wasn't too thrilled with how Will turned out-or his father. That made me a little sad. I also had hoped Love would be in the story more. But, it IS an unfinished work, so who knows what it would have been had she lived longer.

I love that
Sep 11, 2016 Julie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I put off reading this book for so long. Like millions of others, I loved Cold Sassy Tree; it's one of the few books I've read multiple times and I know I will read it again and again. I longed for a sequel, a continuation, but then Olive Ann Burns died. When this unfinished sequel was published, I just couldn't bring myself to read it, knowing it wasn't finished and so couldn't possibly live up to the first Cold Sassy book.

Then a new copy of the book literally fell into my lap at the Salvation
Nov 10, 2011 Joy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Olive Ann Burns is a sorta Margaret Mitchell--lived in Atlanta, journalist by profession, only wrote one novel. This book was 15 chapters that were completed at the time of Burns death. The other half of the book was an 'appreciative reminiscense' of Burns by her long-time editor. I do like OAB. She battled cancer the last few years of her life, but she has to be the most up-beat people I've known of. There is frequent mention of her church and church friends, but no comment on her being a Chris ...more
Mar 17, 2010 Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the unfinished sequel to "Cold Sassy Tree" which I read last summer. The author died before this story was finished, but she had such a strong response from fans to write a sequel that she wanted it published even if it wasn't finished (and obviously so did her publisher). The story picks up 11 years after the first book, still narrated by Will Tweedy, who is now 25 years old, graduated from college, out in the work force, and looking to get married. There isn't much to tell about the bo ...more
Oriyah Nitkin
Jun 08, 2015 Oriyah Nitkin rated it really liked it
The biggest failing of this book was that it remained unfinished. Though I think the 4 stars rating would have remained even if it had been. The prequel (is that the right word if the other book was written first?) to this book, Cold Sassy Tree, was charming and lovely, not only because of its writing quality but because the characters were lovable and flawed, with a culturally-questionable, yet still-somehow-sound morality. It sounds from the reading (notes section) that possibly the characters ...more
Aug 23, 2014 Skip rated it did not like it
Sometimes, when an author passes before the completion of their work -- which is what I believe happened here -- there is some debate on how to proceed: if someone else should step in and finish the book, if the book should be left unpublished, or if the book should be released more or less as-is. It's my understanding that the last option is what was done with Leaving Cold Sassy... and it's my personal opinion that this was an unsatisfying and even detrimental way to follow its predecessor, Col ...more
Jun 25, 2013 Roberta rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literary
If you really liked Cold Sassy Tree, you will either be very excited or very disappointed to read this book. Half of the book is a rather depressing story of Will Tweedy's courtship of a teacher not from the town. Some of it is written in vignettes and some of it is written in outline form as the novel is nowhere near finished but we are told where the writer intended to go. I liked what was there but was definitely left lacking.

The other portion of the book is a biography of Olive Ann Burns by
Oct 02, 2016 Les rated it it was ok
My Original Notes (1996):

So-so. Not nearly as good as Cold Sassy Tree. I'm sure that has a lot to do with the fact the author wrote this as she lay dying of cancer. The working title was Time, Dirt, and Money and was intended to be a sequel to Cold Sassy Tree. Unfortunately, the characters and storyline are very thin/superficial. I was really disappointed. Olive Ann Burns didn't finish the book before her death, but her editor included Olive's notes for the remaining chapters, as well as a remin
I think Cold Sassy Tree is my favorite book, so I was psyched to see that Olive Ann Burns had written a sequel, even though it was unfinished. Unfortunately, the story was not at all what I expected. I was expecting Will to become a writer and to move away to a big city, like New York and eventually write Cold Sassy Tree as a memoir to reminesce about his childhood. However, the storyline for Leaving Cold Sassy was kind of all over the place, which is understandable, considering the fact that Ol ...more
It is hard to judge an unfinished book. In fact it was barely started when it ended at chapter fifteen. The rest of the book is some notes and a very lengthy eulogy/apology/discussion of why on earth there are only fifteen chapters written of the sequel in the five years Olive Ann Burns worked on the novel before her death. It is a very enlightening, often moving, certainly rosy picture of the author's life written by Olive's friend and editor. It describes both before and after Cold Sassy Tree; ...more
I was really interested in reading the sequel to Cold Sassy, and honestly, I was a bit disappointed when I realized that is an "unfinished sequel". I knew I would be left hanging and having to make up my own ending. I appreciate that all stories don't have a happy ending, but I was so hoping that this one would. Even though life for Will and Sanna isn't perfect, I had hoped that it would at least be happy. The novel, itself, only lasts about 100 or so pages. The rest of the book is the editor's ...more
Dec 14, 2012 Fiona rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: general-fiction
I was not impressed with this book. After reading Cold Sassy Tree, I was expecting the same adventure with this sequel. It didn't happen.

First of all, I should have known better. The title of this book does say "Unfinished Sequel" and that is correct. It's an unfinished story. The author, Olive Ann Burns, had cancer when writing this sequel. Unfortunately, the disease finished her before she finished the book. Her editor did add notes as to what Ms Burns told her about the plot and characters. T
Jan 16, 2008 Angela rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Cold Sassy Tree
Recommended to Angela by: friend in San Antonio
Shelves: fiction
This is a first for me. I've never read an unfinished book before. Burns worked on the sequel while she suffered a relapse from cancer (she wrote Cold Sassy Tree when she was laid up in bed with cancer), and she desired her work to be published even if it were not completed. She wrote 15 chapters before she died. She wanted this novel to be titled Time, Dirt, and Money, but I think her editor's choice works better. Will Tweedy as an adult interested me more than he did as a 14-year-old kid. The ...more
Apr 02, 2009 Emily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult-fiction
I didn't love the first book (Cold Sassy Tree) and I really, really didn't like the "ending" to this one.

Olive Ann Burns was dying of cancer while she wrote this book. She realized towards the end that she wasn't going to finish it and left her notes with friends who published those along with the completed first part of the story. So I guess it's fair to say that I would give the completed part 4 stars but I hated the direction the story was taking in the authors notes.

The first part has the r
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Olive Ann Burns was a professional writer, journalist, and columnist for most of her life. She published two novels, one posthumously, and for many years was a staff writer for Atlanta newspapers and the Atlanta Journal Magazine. Her most notable achievement was "Cold Sassy Tree", a novel that describes rural southern life and a young boy's coming-of-age at the tu
More about Olive Ann Burns...

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“Life bullies us son, but God don't. He had good reasons for fixin' it where if'n you git too sick or too hurt to live, why, you can die, same as a sick chicken. I've knowed a few really sick chickens to git well, and lots a-folks git well thet nobody ever thought to see out a-bed agin cept in a coffin. Still and all, common sense tells you this much: everwhat makes a wheel run over a track will make it run over a boy if'n he's in the way. If'n you'd a got kilt, it'd mean you jest didn't move fast enough, like a rabbit that gits caught by a hound dog... When it comes to prayin' we got it all over the other animals, but we ain't no different when it comes to livin' and dyin'. If'n you give God the credit when somebody don't die, you go'n blame Him when they do die? Call it His Will? Ever noticed we git well all the time and don't die but once't? Thet has to mean God always wants us to live if'n we can. ” 13 likes
“I'm convinced true fulfillment is living in God's world one day at a time, savoring it, leaving today's disapointments behind and borrowing no troubles from tomorrow. It's done not only by accepting life, fever, and things that go bump in the night, but also by cultivating love and new and old friendships, and especially by finding a new work or project that makes it exciting just to get up in the morning.” 9 likes
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