Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Pacific Avenue” as Want to Read:
Pacific Avenue
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Pacific Avenue

3.49  ·  Rating Details ·  431 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Where do you go from the end of the line? This is the question facing Kathy Woodbridge as she steps off the bus in the port city of San Pedro, California. Nineteen years old, from Louisiana, she is running away from her past. There's a lot to run away from.

What do you do when there's no one to do for? That's what Lacey Greer wants to know, with her only child off at colleg
Paperback, 328 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Shepard & Piper
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Pacific Avenue, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Pacific Avenue

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Sep 05, 2013 Nenette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Set in the 70s, this love story blends the most significant issues at the time: the war and racism. It illustrates both conditional and unconditional love. It shows the strength that can be drawn from community. It demonstrates the innate goodness of people. It's a very good book altogether; highly recommended.
The story starts with a young woman on a bus to Los Angeles. She is running away from her life in Louisiana. She ends up in San Pedro, CA at the end of the bus line on Pacific Avenue. Through her eyes, thoughts and flashbacks, and those of her friends, we learn why and what she is running from. This story takes place in the early 1970's when young soldiers were coming home to a country that has grown hostile to the war in Vietnam, before PTSD was a diagnosis for their nightmares and reactions to ...more
Apr 09, 2008 Michele rated it it was ok
Recommended to Michele by: Sent by author
Nice Effort, Sad Story
This book took me about a month to finish . . . I simply wasn't motivated to get to the end of the story, most likely because of the structure. The plot is predictable by design, and I found it very sad--neither uplifting nor particularly moving. The writing starts out strong, with great use of mood and description, but soon lapses into the annoying habit of relying on italicized internal dialog for the main character. She is a young woman named Kathy, who escapes her sad l
Jul 07, 2013 Marguerite rated it it was ok
Started out well enough, but quickly became a tired and typical story of a young woman who finds herself homeless and proceeds in the most unbeliavable ways to build a life for herself with the most tired and typical "quirky" characters. I finished it and feel as though I should have been reading something else...
Feb 13, 2011 Evelyn rated it it was ok
Ugh. Naive construction of characters. Poorly written. This could have been an excellent book because the plot was potentially good. But, the author did not execute it well. The worst parts were the rambling italicized thoughts of the characters used to portray their conflicts and intentions. This may have worked in more experienced hands. But, it did not work here.
Feb 12, 2010 Elaine rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Pacific Avenue starts off at a good pace but slowly declines. I just want to get the book over with now. The whole puppet business and the time surrounding that, bogs the story down - way down. Though I do like some of the characters. One of my favorites is Sam.
Jun 14, 2010 Cheryl rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-edition
I was looking forward to this but ended up pretty disappointed. I think this is probably a better book for a teen-aged girl or young adult than someone my age. Having lived through that era I found it a generally interesting story but the writing style was just way too simple for my taste.
Jan 14, 2012 bookster rated it it was ok
It starts out fantastic but then just drags. There is so much sadness as you find out what happened in her life to bring her where she is. After all the drama the ending seemed much to hurried. It seemed that all the suffering had been for nothing.
Apr 07, 2013 Becky rated it did not like it
"It starts out good but then just drags. There is so much sadness as you find out what happened in her life to bring her where she is. After all the drama the ending seemed much to hurried. It seemed that all the suffering had been for nothing."
Apr 17, 2012 Rachael rated it it was ok
ending was a disappointment. Richard had no redeeming qualities that made me want to like or empathize with him.
Jackie Johnson
Feb 11, 2013 Jackie Johnson rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed this book. Another love story that draws you in and takes you on a journey.
Oct 16, 2016 Rosie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed at first but went downhill fast. Could not feel any emotion from any of the characters. They just plodded along. The story line got sidetracked on something stupid which I couldn't seem to figure into the plot. Didn't finish.
Anne L Watson’s Pacific Avenue is one of those novels that would be easy to dismiss as mere romance. However, that would be unfair. Pacific Avenue is also a story about young adulthood, racial prejudice, middle-class expectations, and the psychological effects of war. Kathy is young, white, and middle-classed; the daughter of an idealistic college professor and a closet-racist of a housewife. Lacey is middle-aged, black and poor; an under-payed secretary whose own daughter has just left for coll ...more
Carol Tensen
Nov 26, 2015 Carol Tensen rated it did not like it
I seem to remember this was a freebie on Book Gorilla or Book Bub. It languished on my Kindle until I was on vacation and had nothing else to read. The story was well-intended, though predictable.Minimal character development. Her family seemed so unrealistic. What rankled me was the author's habit of adding details that - for me, at least - didn't add to the narrative. Mucho descriptions of what the characters are looking at, handling, eating interspersed with dialogue. Furthermore, I would hav ...more
Apr 13, 2016 Leslie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book started out pretty well. The character development was good but they slowly just became insignificant characters after the initial background of each one was gone through. The puppet show aspect was way too much and in focus from the rest of the story therefore overshadowing the main plot. While the ending left you hoping for one outcome I still felt like I was left wondering how these lives all came back together or didn't so to speak.
Linda LaMona
Nov 13, 2013 Linda LaMona rated it liked it
This was a book acquired through Book Bub and was free.

I think what I liked most about the book was I could identify with the era, early 70's and what my age was then and thus put me close in age with one of the main characters. It deals with relationships between ethnicity, Vietnam and how returning veterans were treated.

It was different read than my usual as I tend to read more mystery and thrillers. I enjoyed the book but found myself wanting it to move at a faster pace.
judy fillmore
Apr 28, 2014 judy fillmore rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A multifaceted gem

The cover of the book caught my eye first. It took until the end of the book to find out the fitting significance. Having lived thru the seventies, many of the issues were familiar to me. It was interesting to think back to what I felt or experienced regarding the Vietnam War, racism, interracial relationships, and creating families from love if not blood. This is a wonderful book.

Conchie Fernandez
Jul 08, 2014 Conchie Fernandez rated it liked it
Initially a good concept, but the characters were wooden (and not because they were young), uni-dimensional and shallow. Too much pointless dialog in a book that is dialog-driven, and very little insight and development of a major tragedy that was pretty much glossed over by the main character's other concerns. Zero resolution at the end, and I wasn't even left wondering what would happen. Flat.
Jan 29, 2014 Madelynhealey rated it it was amazing
This story is about a teen, Kathy, and a black young man, Richard, that fall in live in early 1970`s. Faced with racism in her own family and from society they flee to a city more sympathetic with their interracial relationship. This book is very realistic and emotional. A wonderful story of love, heartbreak and second chances. ...more
carol tedford
Oct 24, 2015 carol tedford rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautifully moving read

Honestly? I could NOT put this book down. What a beautiful, tragic, bittersweet tale of innocence, love, loss, relationships, friendships, choices and maturity. I shed a few tears ... it was an amazing read. Sad to see the ending because I enjoyed it so much. A MUST read!!!
Mar 12, 2013 Samantha rated it really liked it
I would say this is a little more of a 3 and a half star but I like to round up as I enjoyed it and it was free for me... It is a unique story. I was interested but a little bored at times. I liked the random characters in the book that somehow worked perfectly together in the story. It is a nice read. Makes you think too, how would you handle being in Kathy's situation? I would recommend this.
Jun 12, 2014 Emily rated it really liked it
I was ridiculously surprised at how much I liked this book! I never have too high of expectations when I randomly browse and pick something off the shelves...and really don't expect much out of free kindle books. But I thought this story was really inspiring and thought provoking!
Mar 27, 2013 Fabiola rated it it was amazing
It was kind if a history lesson on how things were and how it affected people when they were still fighting agains segregation. It's a love story and a success story all in one where the main character Kathy learns to follow her dreams no matter what.
Velda Dedeaux
Jul 21, 2010 Velda Dedeaux rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There were quite a few real-life situations presented in this book but the main thing I got from this story related to the importance of getting counseling when one experiences any type of trauma in their lives.
Donna Peake
Jul 05, 2013 Donna Peake rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013-books-read
racism/veitnam nightmares/death/ family

Took awhile to get into the book but it is one of those books that you think about after you finish it. Any book that leave an impression like that is a very good read.
Mar 18, 2014 Penny rated it liked it
This book had a good storyline that had so much potential. I just felt the author stretched out a lot of mundane points, when she should have been concentrating on the meat of the story instead. It was wrapped up too quickly & neatly in the end, but also left some things not quite resolved.
Gloria Johnson
Jun 20, 2013 Gloria Johnson rated it liked it
The story of a white woman and black man in post-Viet Nam era. The characters are interesting and the book kept my interest. The reason for only 3 stars is that, for me, it is not an action-filled, plot heavy book. However, I'd recommend it.
Aug 07, 2012 Brenda rated it liked it
Wish there were 3 1/2 stars, as I liked this book alot, but not as much as my 4 star reviews. Then again, maybe it should get 4 ...... Free or very cheap for kindle fire app.
Vicki Bishop
Feb 16, 2013 Vicki Bishop rated it it was ok
Pretty depressing ... I woudn't be recommending this book.
Sep 05, 2013 Lila rated it liked it
Shelves: other
A challenging story line, but gave insight to a life I haven't experienced.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • A Million Tears
  • The Kiribati Test
  • Young People, Ethics, and the New Digital Media: A Synthesis from the Good Play Project: A Synthesis from the GoodPlay Project (The John D. and Catherine ... Reports on Digital Media and Learning)
  • Swan Place
  • Living and Learning with New Media: Summary of Findings from the Digital Youth Project (The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Series on Digital Media and Learning)
  • Black Sea Affair
  • The Future of Learning Institutions in a Digital Age (The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Reports on Digital Media and
  • Tumor
  • Raising Jake
  • The Tourist Trail
  • Condemn Me Not
  • Mighty Hammer Down
  • Island Passage
  • Vada Faith
  • Summer Melody
  • A Night of Horrors
  • Pearls
  • The Rockin' Chair

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »