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A Green Journey
Jon Hassler
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A Green Journey

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  476 ratings  ·  39 reviews
"Hassler's characters have old-fashioned values and typical human failings; they make this a novel to restore your faith in humanity."
Agatha McGee is following a dream, though it might be late in the game. She's just retired from a career of teaching and travels to Ireland in search of the romance she never had time for. And along the way, she not only dis...more
Hardcover, 282 pages
Published December 1st 1984 by William Morrow & Company (first published 1984)
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Rachel Crooks
I just love Agatha McGee. She is not the type of character I would expect to love, though - she is full of harsh edges and what some might call "religious spirits." But there is something so endearing in the chaos of her story among her inner certainty of how life should be. She wants to orient the world to her inner rightness, and yet it will not be righted: in the meantime she learns the gift of acceptance - acceptance of the people life throws her way.

I was not sure how to think of James O...more
From my blog: (\__/)nymfaux

Agatha McGee is a brash and unapologetic no-nonsense spinster. She’s spent her entire life devoted to her Catholic faith and 46 years teaching her sixth grade students. To the small town of Staggerford, MN, Miss McGee is as much an institution as St. Isadore’s, where she teaches, and even the Church, itself. Everyone seems to have put Agatha in a neat little box, expecting her to retire and take up knitting and bingo.

A new bishop is threatening to close St. Isadore’s...more
In his fourth novel Hassler returns to Staggerford, Minn., for the first time since "Staggerford;" not that his incisive looks at small-town Midwestness in places not named Staggerford are big departures. Here, in fact, much of the plot ends up taking place abroad.

The strong-willed yet occasionally kind-hearted sixty-something Agatha McGee takes center stage here, visiting a pen-pal in Ireland and finding he's more (and less) than what he seems. Nice characterizations and writing, as always, and...more
Except for North of Hope, Hassler has set all of his books (at least those I have read) in the town of Staggerford, MN. The Character of Agatha, McGee reoccurs in all of the books. She is the main character in this one. A mid to lat 60ish spinster, teacher and Staunch old-fashioned Catholic who, as she comes to the end of her career looks back on her life, finds love, she thinks, and comes to terms with modernity, in her fashion. There is a trip to Ireland that wonderfully evokes the people and...more
I was hoping to get more out of this book, and I'm not sure how it made it to my to read list. I thought I was looking for funny, comical books and this one came up. It was available on so I mooched and read it.

There are comments on the back about wanting to read aloud passages, and laughing at parts...I did neither.

I guess I was just expecting something more. It was a good book about a retired catholic school teacher, Agatha McGee, who feels the catholic faith is going down hill...more
Alissa Prevost
A wonderful read for a day when you're feeling Irish, whimsical, or are in need of cheering up, 'A Green Journey' will help with that.
Take with tea and rain until finished.
great characterization. looking forward to reading more by Hassler, an author I did not know
Tamra Karl
I'm halfway through this book and still don't care what happens to the characters. So, back to the library with it.
A wonderful story of a retired Catholic School teacher in the mid 80's. She travels to Ireland to meet a life long penpal for the first time. There are characters galore and surprises abound all wrapped up in the scenery of small town America and the misty land of Eire. Tea and crumpets slathered with butter and marmalade and eaten while sitting in your favorite chair would be the perfect accompaniment. Enjoy
Geo Forman
another thoroughtly enjoyable book by Hassler. This story revolves around Agatha McGee as she discovers that, even though she is several years past retirement age, life still offers lessons and challenges. I found myself laughing out loud at some of the incidents related in the book. thankfully there are still books involving Staggerford residents to anticipate.
I found this as a very cheap (@5 pesos) second-(or so)hand book with uninteresting cover at a book sale, but because it's so cheap I bought it. So I was not expecting much from it. But I was pleasantly surprised to be enjoying it. Good writing with nice characters, I couldn't put it down (if only I don't have to work).
A sweet story, but a little boring. It does seem a bit dated, the characters seem much older than they are supposed to be. I'm not sure that the story gives the best depiction of Ireland, again that may be due to the changes that have taken place in the country since the era in which this story took place.
A Staggerford book of characters we've met before, here a retired teacher. "Green" refers to going on a trip to Ireland to meet a man she's been penpals with who turns out to be a priest who wanted a friend who didn't relate to him as a priest but as a person.
I have now read this book four times. Each time I laugh, each time I dread certain things coming, each time I think about the characters long after I have finished the book. Hassler is exceptional in his portrayal of humans with all of out strengths and foibles.
In this very gentle fiction, an unmarried retired school teacher travels to Ireland to meet the penpal she has written to for four years. The plot thickens when she learns he is a priest. I enjoy almost everything this author writes.
Another well-written story from Mr Hassler. I really like how believable and well-thought out his characters are. My only gripe with this story is I can't figure out how it really "ends".
These Jon Hassler books are gems. This one has a tv movie available on Neltflix. The movie doesn't follow the book very precisely, but both the book and the movie are good experiences.
Jun 24, 2010 Bayneeta rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Bayneeta by: Debbie
Agatha, Janet, and Lillian Kite visit Ireland. Agatha meets her penpal, and considers what she'll do with her life in retirement. Book 2 in Hassler's Staggerford series.
If you enjoyed the character of Agnes McGee in Staggerford, you will enjoy this one more, as it expands on that character and gives her a soulmate. Enjoyable.
Beth Yeh
I really like Jon Hassler, his work is like a soothing bedtime story--very calming and relaxing. His characters are fun and his writing is very calming to me.
Not my usual genre but I enjoyed it, even thought I'm an atheist and several of the people are dealing with issues involving the Catholic Church.
Jul 27, 2008 Melle rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Minnesotans
Shelves: minnesota
Staggerford's prim Agatha McGee bonds over letters with a like-minded witty Irishman named James O'Hannon and finds herself in the Emerald Isle.
Very lovely! An old-fashioned yet timeless novel which taught me that one is never too old to explore the yearnings of your heart.
Steve Gathje
Wow! What a great book! The first Hassler book I read. Made into a TV Movie with Angela Lansbury.
I'm actually re-reading this book, in preparation for our trip to Ireland. Beautifully written, funny, touching. I love Jon Hassler.
Jo Marie
Read this for the second time for a book discussion and enjoyed it just as much as the first time.
I really loved the series of letters that form the heart of this book. It was a delightful read.
Agatha McGee is a great character. She would likely hate me, but I still visit her every few years.
This novel was a little slow. Good story, but rather tedious to get through.
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Jon Hassler was born in Minneapolis, but spent his formative years in the small Minnesota towns of Staples and Plainview, where he graduated from high school. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from St. John's University in 1955. While teaching English at three different Minnesota high schools, he received his Master of Arts degree in English from the University of North Dakota in...more
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