The Hour I First Believed The Hour I First Believed discussion


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Help Please? How many pages in did it take you to get into this book?

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message 1: by Stephanie (last edited Jan 24, 2009 04:33PM) (new) - added it

Stephanie Would love some advice! I'm just shy of 150 pages in and am not yet involved in the story. Should I press on? Will I start caring soon? I would appreciate points of view from those who've read it because I'd really like to get into this book, but am not sure if I should keep investing. If you liked it/loved it, did you already know that by this point in the story? (To describe where I'm at without adding a spoiler..Caelum is at the farm making arrangements and Maureen should be there to meet him in a day or two.) Thank you very much!


Kathy Wawrzyniak Stephanie, Have you read either of the other two Lamb books? I was captured with the very first page and finished the book in less than a week (and I'm a mother of 4 who works full time!). I agree with lots of reviews I've read which say that he could have left off the story of his ancestry, but that didn't stop me from reading every word and then even going back and rereading the first chapter. Maybe this one isn't for you!


Laura Eh--this story never gripped me. I have inhaled his other work and kept waiting for this one to draw me in, but it never did.


message 4: by Stephanie (new) - added it

Stephanie I devoured and loved his other books. I suppose this one simply isn't for me after all -- or perhaps just not right now. Sometimes books are about timing. I truly and sincerely appreciate both of your comments! Thank you so much.


Kiersten I'm a big Wally Lamb fan and loved his other two books, but never got in to this one. I finished it though. I cannot put my finger on the reason that I didn't like it. Some parts of it were interesting as in her friendship with the girl student.

I thought maybe because of the topic: the school shootings. But, I'm not sure anymore because I just finished We Need the Talk About Kevin and really liked it. Also, if a writer is good, and Wally Lamb is great, I typically don't mind the specific topic. Heck, I'd probably read his grocery list!


Celia Barry Keep going. My favorite of Lamb's books was "I Know This Much Is True" but these two books together with "She's Come Undone" all relate to each other and I think, are worth the effort. Keep going.


Chipjunkie I stopped about the same point as you did. When he was writing as a young boy he lost me. I was enjoying the book until then. I put it down briefly but then could never get back into it.

Based on other reviews I've read about the book in general I don't think you'll be pulled into the story anytime soon.


Jacki Sharib I loved this book. It did not take me a while to get into it, but I can see why it would take others a while. I have tried reading She's Come Undone several times and I can't get into it, even though everyone says it is a great book.


message 9: by Amy (new) - rated it 5 stars

Amy It's been awhile since I read this one, but I apparently loved it.... Here is the review I wrote: Loved it! I love this author. Easiest 750+ page book I've read in a long, long, time. He keeps you interested, jumping from Columbine tragedy, to Katrina tragedy, to mental illness, etc. Lots of twists & turns; you never know what's gonna happen to the poor main character & his wife next.


Rosemary Stephanie wrote: "Would love some advice! I'm just shy of 150 pages in and am not yet involved in the story. Should I press on? Will I start caring soon? I would appreciate points of view from those who've read it ..."
It has been some time since I read this book but I do remember that I loved it and thought it was a great read. I don't remember having any trouble getting into it but I know I was sorry when I finished it.


Sarah sentence one caught me. but i'm biased. Lamb is my all time favorite author and I'm super excited that he's finally going to publish another book woo hoo!!! i will admit that if i were to rank his books in order (fiction, not the stories he edited for the women's prison) it would be I Know this much is true, She's come undone and then The hour I first Believed.


Kathy I am a huge Wally Lamb fan. She's Come Undone was my first and was amazed that it was written by a man; how he is he able to get inside the head of a woman with such accuracy? Have read all of his other books, including The Hour I First Believed. The ancestry part, I remember, was a little dry at certain points, but all in all, loved it. Can't wait to read his next book and at the end, I'll be impatiently waiting for his next book, then the next, then the next.....


message 13: by Charlene (new) - added it

Charlene A. Just finished his book but can't remember when it grabbed me. Probably from the get go because of the tragic event that happened at school. Enlightening perspective on how a tragic event can completely destroy a life even though she survived. Family ancestry was long winded and could have been shortened. Probably a Wally Lamb fan and would another book by the same. PS Read This Much I Know is True.


Sherry Stephanie wrote: "Would love some advice! I'm just shy of 150 pages in and am not yet involved in the story. Should I press on? Will I start caring soon? I would appreciate points of view from those who've read it ..."

About 200.


Kathy Stephanie, if you are 200 pp. into The Hour... and you're still having a hard time getting into it, I think you're probably done. Personally, even if someone, or many for that fact, rave about a book that I'm finding so tedious to read, I give it up; too many books out there I want to read. Not all genres, story lines, or topics are going to appeal to everyone. But it's up to you. I used to feel like a dagger was hanging over my head if I didn't finish something I started, but reading should be enjoyable, inspiring, etc. and if it isn't for you, feel free to quit, but don't let that stop you from trying another Lamb book. He is a great author; have you tried any of Lamb's other books?


message 16: by Lee (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lee Harmon The flavor of the book is not going to change. There will be no thought-provoking insights, no page-turning plots, no riviting climax. So if you have read 200 pages and can't get into it, you're done.


Janette Mapes The beginning was the worst for me. It was so confusing & jumbled up. kept thinking What is the point? Then suddenly it just took off (like 150-200 pages in). I was glad I kept reading- almost put it down a couple of times.


Michael Jenkins This is the first book I read by this author, I have heard rave reviews about his previous books. I thought this book started off okay, it got better as it progressed. On the other hand, it was inconsistent in most areas and weak character development.The author added too many unnecessary information.


Lindy I loved his other books and was excited to read this one but I did not like it at all. I slogged through the entire book hoping it would get better....it did not.


message 20: by Ros (new) - rated it 2 stars

Ros Saunderson I too struggled with this book and never finished it .... It was just so tedious and despite getting close to the end, I just didn't care enough about the characters to continue!


Kiersten Michael wrote: "This is the first book I read by this author, I have heard rave reviews about his previous books. I thought this book started off okay, it got better as it progressed. On the other hand, it was inc..."

Try I Know This Much is True. It's a much better book. Wally missed the mark on The Hour I First Believed. It felt flat to me.


Rosie I liked his other books ALOT and couldnt put down.
This one was not of the same caliber, but I loved it. I do agree it was a bit wordy than his usual.


message 23: by Val (new) - rated it 3 stars

Val Stephanie wrote: "Would love some advice! I'm just shy of 150 pages in and am not yet involved in the story. Should I press on? Will I start caring soon? I would appreciate points of view from those who've read it ..."

I felt the same way, but half way through I finally connected with the story and began to enjoy reading it. I believe it is totally worth finishing.


scott Rosemary wrote: "Stephanie wrote: "Would love some advice! I'm just shy of 150 pages in and am not yet involved in the story. Should I press on? Will I start caring soon? I would appreciate points of view from tho..."

wally is probably my favorite author. i agree with sarah w/regards to placement of his novels. #1)I Know This Much #2)She's Come Undone #3) Hour I First Believed but stephanie, i was a bit perturbed with "Hour" cuz i wasn't liking it as much as i had hoped. and it probably took at least 150 to 200 pages until i was comfortable enough with how the story was progressing and knew that i would finish it. all in all it was a fine read, it just didn't reach the zenith that #1 reached for me personally. i doubt that any book could out-do what i feel for "I Know This Much is True". it is a masterpiece and will be hard for wally or anyone else to surpass.


Marianne Laura wrote: "Eh--this story never gripped me. I have inhaled his other work and kept waiting for this one to draw me in, but it never did."

i agree!


Sherrie Phillips Just found this thread and I see it's a few months old but thought I would weigh in. His book, "I Know This Much is True" is one of my favorites. Have read it 3 times. I was so excited to read this one. However, it did not resonate with me. Over the course of about 8 years, this book touches on every disaster natural & man-made starting with Columbine and intertwines them with the characters personal tragedies. It just felt like there was no relief from the gloom and I was angry at the ending. I wished I had stopped at page 150. I guess the title should have been a tip off for me. I had my own traumas surrounding religion and Amazing Grace is my least favorite hymn.


Linda I never got into myself..


Jennifer If I hadn't listened to the audiobook version I don't think I ever would have kept reading.


Lauren Almost the entire book. The ending was so sad, too...


Lauren nothing compared to I Know This Much is True or She's Come Undone


Sarah I just got another copy of she's come undone to be read for the 3rd time. it's a big deal for me since i never re-read books. Lamb is an exception. I can't wait for the new one that's supposed to be out this fall!!!!


Carolyn I adored this book, but I was hooked from the first page. I think the narrator's voice was what really drew me in. It's a pretty rough book with a lot of subject matter to deal with, and I'm not sure that you will like it any more later on in the book if you are not into it from the beginning. Maybe put it down and try it again later? Sometimes you have to be in the right mood for a book. This one does seem to be a big divider between Lamb fans though, readers seem to love it or hate it. I personally liked this one far more than "She's Come Undone," but I have seen a lot of people who feel just the opposite.


Andrea I actually listened to this on cd in my car. I did really enjoy it, but I don't think I would have finished it if I had tried reading the book. I have to agree with the previous comments, maybe you just are not in the "mood" at this time, trying it later might work better for you.


scott Michael wrote: "This is the first book I read by this author, I have heard rave reviews about his previous books. I thought this book started off okay, it got better as it progressed. On the other hand, it was inc..."

michael:
have you read any of his other books yet?


scott Sarah wrote: "I just got another copy of she's come undone to be read for the 3rd time. it's a big deal for me since i never re-read books. Lamb is an exception. I can't wait for the new one that's supposed to ..."

sarah:
what do you know about the new one coming this fall?
is it a fictional work? i started to read "i know..." again and realized i wasn't quite emotionally prepared for the ride but i still plan on doing it sometime in the near future.


Sarah http://www.thewesterlysun.com/mysticr...

this article says a little about the book. It's fiction. I'm super psyched. It's hard to wait so many years for some authors to come out with new books. They are usually worth waiting for but still............


Susan Page one. But, then I wish I could remember at what page his attitude began to annoy me.


I thoroughly enjoyed I Know This Much Is True because the protagonist's situation of having a mentally-off sibling that he felt he had to protect, but also wanted to get away from, was very relevant to me. The Hour I First Believed did not have a personal connection for me, and I often disagreed with his point of view.


Susan Sarah wrote: "http://www.thewesterlysun.com/mysticr...

this article says a little about the book. It's ficti..."

Oh, dear. Racial strife. I don't like racial strife.
As I said in the comment above, his one book struck a chord with me, but now I don't like the direction he's going in.


scott this article says a little about the book. It's ficti..."

i hate the wait too, sarah. but wally has a large family and last i heard he was a professor at a connecticut university so he's probably busier than most writers. thanks for the info though!


scott Carolyn wrote: "I adored this book, but I was hooked from the first page. I think the narrator's voice was what really drew me in. It's a pretty rough book with a lot of subject matter to deal with, and I'm not su..."

carolyn: do you know who the narrator was on the audio CD? somebody well known or just an unknown smooth voice? was the whole novel included?


message 41: by scott (last edited Apr 11, 2013 03:03PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

scott Sherrie wrote: "Just found this thread and I see it's a few months old but thought I would weigh in. His book, "I Know This Much is True" is one of my favorites. Have read it 3 times. I was so excited to read this..."

you touched on something that did ring true for me - "the hour i first.." would have been better had it included more UP scenarios. it was heavy and full of downers with little (for me, anyway) uplifting stuff. i still enjoyed it immensely. and amazing grace is one of my least favorite hymns also. unless it's the version by judy collins. her rendition builds all the way to the end and she succeeds in salvaging it [excuse my being off topic]


Sarah we will have to compare notes when it comes out after we read it.


scott Sarah wrote: "we will have to compare notes when it comes out after we read it."

yes, for sure! i think it will be a good one. thanks for the link, BTW


Sarah np


message 45: by Stephanie (new) - added it

Stephanie I haven't been on goodreads since shortly after I posted my question over a year ago and have just discovered all of these amazing answers. Thanks to all of you for your comments. I did indeed put the book down. I was immediately sucked into his others, which is why I was so reticent to bail on this one. I'll still hold out for his next!


Margaret1358 Joyce Stephanie wrote: "I haven't been on goodreads since shortly after I posted my question over a year ago and have just discovered all of these amazing answers. Thanks to all of you for your comments. I did indeed put ..."

Stephanie wrote: "Would love some advice! I'm just shy of 150 pages in and am not yet involved in the story. Should I press on? Will I start caring soon? I would appreciate points of view from those who've read it ..."

Hi Stephanie, Keep reading -- it should kick in pretty soon. I had the same hesitation/frustration but am glad I stuck with it. Overall, there's a dimension of faith and hope streaming through the whole thing that needs the buildup.Though I do think it could have been tightened up better by the author.


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The Hour I First Believed (other topics)
I Know This Much Is True (other topics)