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Mimi Malloy, At Last!

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  386 ratings  ·  92 reviews
Mimi Malloy, At Last! is an unforgettable novel, alive with humor, unexpected romance, and the magic of hard-earned insight: a poignant reminder that it's never too late to fall in love and that one can always come of age a second time.

Meet Mimi Malloy: A daughter of the Great Depression, Mimi was born into an Irish-Catholic brood of seven, and she has done her best to rai
Hardcover, 276 pages
Published April 8th 2014 by Picador
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Average rating 3.63  · 
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Mar 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
Not normally the type of book that I would have picked off the shelf to read, but I received a copy through the Goodreads First Read giveaways. Glad I did! I Couldn't help to like Mimi from the very beginning. It was like getting to know Maxine the Shoebox Greeting card lady before she began her card career! Although the plot isn't an edge of your seat thriller, it does make you want to keep reading. There is plenty of humor, a little romance, and a little bit of mystery. ...more
Feb 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
At first I was not very sympathetic toward the main character of this novel, Mimi Malloy, a reluctantly retired 60-ish divorcee with six daughters, but as the story was told, with wit and humor, I began to like her more. If nothing else this book taught me not to accept someone at face value or by a single encounter; take time to get to know and understand another person, peel back a few layers, and you may be surprised by what you find.
I cannot say that the answer to the big mystery of the bo
Jun 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
The cover of the book is whimsical and looks like a light fluffy summer read, but don’t judge a book by its cover. There’s humor, but there’s also a sadness and heartache in this story of a rather quirky 68 year old divorcée. Mimi lives alone after being dumped by her husband for a younger woman, and has recently been forced into retirement. Her daughters are worried about Mimi’s memory and when an MRI shows signs of TIAs, there is a campaign to convince her to move to an assisted living facilit ...more
Jun 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
It is a rare and talented writer that can tackle the darkest and most serious topics with warmth and humor. Julia MacDonnell proves herself to be solidly in this group with novel, Mimi Malloy, at Last! When readers are first introduced to Mimi she is a cranky, chain smoking, hard drinking woman in her sixties. One of seven sisters of a Depression Era Irish Catholic family of Boston, Mimi is used to being busy and to hard work. Divorced for years and the mother of six strong willed daughters Mimi ...more
Rhonda Lomazow
Feb 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
You will fall in love with Mimi. A woman in her late sixties a newly retired divorcee.mimi has a joy for life no matter how her daughters or sisters who love her very much interfere she cherishes her apt& her family.a friendship with Duffy the super blossoms into so much more.I was totally charmed from the first page.
Apr 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-library, 2017
Meet Mimi Malloy: A daughter of the Great Depression, Mimi was born into an Irish-Catholic brood of seven, and she has done her best to raise six beautiful daughters of her own. Now they're grown, and Mimi, a divorcee, is unexpectedly retired. But she takes solace in the comforts of her new life: her apartment in the heart of Quincy, the occasional True Blue cigarette, and evenings with Frank Sinatra on the stereo and a highball in her hand.
Yet her phone is arguably the busiest in greater Bosto
May 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: novel
I just finished reading "Mimi Malloy, at Last!", a novel by Julie MacDonnell. This is an excellent book! Trust me when I say it is not the book it starts out to be...

At first it seems like familiar ground, just another book about a woman at mid-life, who is depressed due to forced retirement, who lives alone after betrayal and divorce. Mimi is alienated from some of her daughters and the others are trying to force her to give up her apartment and move into senior housing due to her increasing me
JoAnne Pulcino
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I loved this story, and Mimi is such a well-drawn character. Mimi is in her late 60's, and many of her memories seem to be gone, or muddled. But at the same time, other long buried memories, most from her troubled childhood, seem to be bubbling up, sometimes erupting to fill the "black holes" a neurologist tells her he has found in her brain. And her personal relationships are very rocky as well. The oldest surviving of 7 sisters (3 now deceased), and the mother of 6 daughters, Mimi struggles wi ...more
Sandy Neal
Apr 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book was a Goodreads Giveaway advance copy.

I loved it! I will keep this book and re-read it! And I don't usually do that!

Mimi Malloy is a mature woman who is happy living alone in her modest little apartment. She is having some problems remembering things these days but is not ready to give up the right to live as she chooses: with a cigarette in hand, a highball in the evening and thinking about the present, not the past.

This novel deals heads on with various coping styles, family dynamic
Jan 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I received this book through a Goodreads First Reads giveaway.

This was a really wonderful book, sappy and sweet, about generation gaps and broken families and love and frustration and learning to accept the past and look forward to the future. I really enjoyed this book.
Rebecca H.
Oct 17, 2018 rated it liked it
I picked this up as a light read.. it is a light read, but it deals with some heavy stuff. I wasn’t too thrilled that I could guess the deep dark secret from the very beginning. But, I hung in there and it turned out ok. Still, I feel like this book could have been a chapter shorter.
Mar 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: firstreads
I received a free ARC of this book through the GoodReads First Reads program.

I have to say, from the get-go, I felt I was meant to love this book. My ARC's cover art is quite different from what is pictured on the site presently; while the general rule is that one shouldn't judge a book by its cover, the minute I pulled the blue-and-patterned book from its package and saw that the only thing the actual cover had in common with what I'd seen online was the font choice, it was immediately bumped u
Jun 10, 2014 rated it it was ok
After finishing “Mimi Malloy, At Last!” (at last!), I submit that this was one ambitious effort by author Julia MacDonnell. Start with a spunky divorced and retired woman, give her six sisters and six adult daughters, throw in some seriously repressed memories, a vile stepmother, a few ghosts, some Irish fairy lore, plus a love interest with his own family issues, and then give each chapter the title of a Frank Sinatra song and try to tie it all up neatly with a bow.

At first I expected a romp of
The spaces in between
BookPage® Review by Megan Fishmann

It has been 20 years since Julia MacDonnell wrote her first novel, A Year of Favor. But readers will find her highly entertaining and heartfelt second novel, Mimi Malloy, at Last!, well worth the wait.

At 68, Mimi Malloy finds herself divorced, forced into early retirement and spending her days fending off check-in phone calls from her six daughters and four surviving sisters. Having lost her husband to a much younger secretary, she bides her
Apr 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
First the disclaimer: I received this book as part of the GoodReads free giveaway program. That said, this is a fantastic book! Engaging from the first page, all the characters are well written and fleshed out with details, and very believable. As you read, you'll be drawn in further to an engaging story of betrayal, loss, courage and laughter. While the family is Irish Catholic from Boston, the issues of aging, being estranged from family members, keeping family secrets, and family loyalty are ...more
Joan Hanna
Jul 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
MacDonnell weaves the present, the past, and all the possibilities for the future into an interesting fabric that reminds us of the resilience of the human spirit. And while we begin the story wanting Mimi to be safe, we end the story realizing that she is truly the master of her life in ways we could never have imagined. I don’t want to give you any spoilers, but once Mimi gets under your skin, you will not be able to put this book down. You will love Mimi’s determination, you will love how she ...more
May 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I somehow expected this book to be light, entertaining and of the Marian Keyes variety (which I love). I was all off and I couldn't be happier. This book may not resonate for under 50s and being Irish adds another level of charm. I did not want to put it down, even to needlepoint! It also speaks to the sense of memories, how clear are they,how exact is the information passed to us by the generation before us... Don't miss it!!! ...more
Joanie Driemeyer
Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was ok
I really disliked it at first. By the time I finished, it was OK. But just OK. Way too many characters (the main character, 6 sisters and 6 daughters, plus the love interest) The story didn't really flow - the skipping back and forth between past and present can work, but didn't transition well in this book. It treated a serious subject (child abuse) in too lighthearted of an approach. ...more
Feb 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was a goodreads winner. It was a nice book to read. I didn't want to put it down. ...more
Aug 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction-general
This story was a surprise. Looking at the title and book cover, I thought it was going to be more of a humorous type story of a divorced older woman who now had a lot of time to think about her life, and was going to do so because of a recent visit to a neurologist. Instead, it turned out to be an exceptional story about a woman who has no intention of going into an assisted living home, and is beginning, for the first time in her adult life, to deal with painful childhood memories. She is not b ...more
Kathy Barr
Jan 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is about a 69-year-old second generation Irish woman Mimi. One of 7 sisters with 5 daughters of her own. She is divorced and living alone. She has forgotten memories of her childhood including the mysterious loss of a little sister, Fagan. When Mimi's mother dies in childbirth her father marries beautiful, young Flanna 'right of then boat' from Ireland. Flanna is well versed in the magic of fairies and protection from it. Mimi slowly unravels here past with the help of her sisters and ...more
Jan 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015-reads
Meet Mimi Malloy: A daughter of the Great Depression, Mimi was born into an Irish-Catholic brood of seven, and she has done her best to raise six beautiful daughters of her own. Now they’re grown, and Mimi, a divorcée, is unexpectedly retired. But she takes solace in the comforts of her new life: her apartment in the heart of Quincy, the occasional True Blue cigarette, and evenings with Frank Sinatra on the stereo and a highball in her hand.

Yet her phone is arguably the busiest in greater Boston
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, arc
Mimi Malloy, At Last, by Julia MacDonnell, is the story of an almost-seventy-year old woman who is forced to confront her painful past when one of her grandchildren asks her to help him complete a genealogy project for school.

I absolutely love the premise of this book--and really any book that involves a character reflecting back on her life, taking stock. So it surprises me even now to say that I hated Mimi Malloy, At Last so, so much. The story was slow and irredeemably depressing. Honestly, b
At age 67 Maire (Mimi) Sheehan Malloy is more or less content with her life. She has a cozy apartment all to herself, her daily cocktails and cigarettes, a family of sisters and daughters who live nearby her Quincy, MA, home, and a suprising late-life budding romance with the apartment complex handyman Duffy. Mimi has always believed that it is best to leave the past in the past and not to dredge up unhappy memories but a genealogy project being done by one of her grandchildren forces the past b ...more
May 20, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: adult-fiction
I try not to look at others' reviews before I write mine because I'm a person who usually just goes along with the flow unless there is an injustice involved. So when I don't like a book as much as other people did, I feel bad. Is there something wrong with the way I think?? But being 59 years old, I guess I need to get over that! So here goes!

I really did not love this book. I liked was okay. Mimi Malloy was an okay character. I think I could have been friends with her. But I had a hard
Nov 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is the first novel I have been able to get through in a long time.

Mimi Malloy is a 60+ woman whose life has changed entirely. Divorced, laid off from her job, living in a small apartment, she gets to be her own self for the first time in forever. Married at 19, delivering 6 daughters in a short time frame behaving as a good wife and mother should years ago, she now enjoys her own company, thoughts and time table.

But, with time to think and the interference of her sisters and daughters, sh
Apr 03, 2014 rated it it was ok
This book has gotten so many raves in so many different arenas, I raced to the library when it came in to be the first to get it. However, I became mired down with too many characters. By the time I realized I should have been keeping a written record of who was who, it was too late -- I would have had to start over…..

There was Mimi who had a father a mother a step-mother and five sisters and all of their families (husbands and ex-husbands, children, their husbands, wives, etc.). Then Mimi had s
Jenni V.
Apr 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: i-own, first-reads
I received this book through a Goodreads First Reads giveaway.

4.5 almost perfect stars!
I could listen to elderly people tell me their life stories all day so it was very easy for me to get lost in this book. I love Mimi. She's quirky, spunky, and even a little flirty. The interactions between her and her super, Duffy, were absolutely adorable.
This was a deceptively light read. Mimi's memories were very heavy but while I felt sorrow and regret for her, I didn't walk away with a melancholy feeling
Dec 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is such a unique book that has amazingly well described personalities with their vulnerabilities, strengths, dysfunctions, and excess baggage from the past in addition to complex relationships the characters have with each other. The story is about the main character taking inventory of her life, including all the betrayals and abuses she has suffered throughout her life in the hands of the people she has loved the most and regaining repressed memories of horrible childhood abuses. Although ...more
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Mansfield Public ...: The 'Mimi Molloy, At Last!" review by Jessica Neumuth 1 4 Jul 03, 2014 11:58AM  

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Julia MacDonnell’s fiction has appeared in many literary magazines, and her story "Soy Paco" was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her journalism has been featured in The Boston Globe, the New York Daily News, and The Philadelphia Inquirer, among other publications. A tenured professor at Rowan University, she is the nonfiction editor of Philadelphia Stories. Mimi Malloy, At Last! is her first novel ...more

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