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Evvie Drake Starts Over

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4.11  ·  Rating details ·  5,431 ratings  ·  1,221 reviews
In a small town in Maine, recently widowed Eveleth "Evvie" Drake rarely leaves her house. Everyone in town, including her best friend, Andy, thinks grief keeps her locked inside, and she doesn't correct them. In New York, Dean Tenney, former major-league pitcher and Andy's childhood friend, is struggling with a case of the "yips": he can't throw straight anymore, and he ca ...more
Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published June 25th 2019 by Ballantine Books
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4.11  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,431 ratings  ·  1,221 reviews


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Larry H
Jul 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you're looking for a book to charm you completely and worm its way into your heart, you don't have to look any further than Linda Holmes' debut novel, Evvie Drake Starts Over . Boy, did I thoroughly enjoy this one!

It's been nearly a year since her husband died in a car accident, and Evvie (like "Chevy," not "Stevie") Drake has spent most of the time holed up in her house, trying to stay out of the public eye. Her husband was a beloved physician in their small Maine town, and she is rarely in
...more
Christine
Mar 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Christine by: Debra tbr on feed
3.5 stars rounded to 4 stars

This was a fun read. Just having read a heavy-duty literary fiction novel, I was ready for something like this. Evvie Drake is a young woman who decides to start her life over. Her best and platonic friend Andy knows Evvie needs the extra money and talks her into renting the apartment attached to the house to his childhood friend Dean. Dean is a former star pitcher with the New York Yankees who has recently lost his career thanks to a case of the “yips.” These are our
...more
JanB
DNF @20%. I was expecting a fun rom-com but there’s little comedy and I had already resorted to skimming.
Laurie Anderson
This is the perfect summer read - enjoy!
Claire Reads Books
4.5 ⭐ I’m a longtime fan of Linda Holmes’s writing and of her work on NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast, so I went into this book really wanting to love it — and I was relieved to discover that it’s even better than I was hoping it would be. This book is pretty much what I wish every contemporary romance novel was — something with enough fantasy and dizziness to provide a sense of escape, but something that also doesn’t sand down life’s rough surfaces or trim away its ragged edges. This is a ...more
Kristy K
Wow, I devoured this book. I started during work (don’t judge) and rushed home to finish it in evening. There was something about it that just resonated with me.

Evvie’s finally leaving a loveless marriage when the unthinkable happens and her husband dies. Now she has to act like the grieving widow while secretly feeling like a monster and shamed inside. Dean’s career as a pitcher comes to an end when he gets the ‘yips’ and is unable to throw accurately anymore. He moves to small town Maine and
...more
Cindy Burnett
Apr 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars

Evvie Drakes Starts Over is a highly entertaining, occasionally heartbreaking, and always engrossing tale that has stayed with me long after I finished it. The book is set in a small town in Maine and tells the story of Evvie Drake and Dean Tenney, two very different individuals who are hurting and need help recovering from their own personal traumas.

Evvie’s husband, a prominent doctor in their small town, died the year before on the day Evvie was planning to leave him. Intensely priva
...more
Jenne
Feb 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance, arc
A romance about adults acting like adults! They have actual conversations! They fall in love because they REALLY LIKE EACH OTHER! They make mistakes and then apologize! They have nuanced friendships with people of the opposite sex! They help each other, and sometimes it goes wrong! They have complicated relationships with their careers and parents! There is also kissing!
Corina
4.5 stars


Have you ever had a book that makes you feel good?

Evvie Drake Starts Over was one of them. From beginning to end of the audiobook (even though I have the hardcover edition, I decided to try the audiobook, since I received it so quickly from the library), I was smiling and just feeling good about this story.

It’s definitely a romance, a slow burn, but it’s also so much more. It’s about friendships, about loss, about mental health issues, a journey of personal rediscovery, of letting go, a
...more
Patricia Williams
I loved this book and could not stop reading it. I received an ARC of this book from publisher a few months back and then I started seeing in on lots of the "summer readiing Lists" and knew I had to go ahead and read it And I'm glad I did. A very simple and sweet story of Evvie who tries so hard to start over her life and what happens along the way. Love her and the other main characters.
Janssen
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, arc, chick-lit
It's hard to find good chick-lit that's not too racy and not too stupid. This one was just about perfect. And the dialogue was so sharp - I underlined so many funny lines.
Susan
Evvie Drake is young and newly widowed and Dean Tenney is a pro baseball player who has a serious case of the yips. When Dean moves into the apartment in the back of Evvie's house they have two rules she won't talk about her husband and he won't talk about baseball and so their friendship begins. This was a charming and sweet story that I enjoyed and was a welcome change of pace from the books I normally read. I look forward to more from this author.

Thank you Netgalley and Random House Books-Bal
...more
Nerdette Podcast
A MiLLION STARS FOR THIS FABULOUS BOOK
Lori
Mar 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is such a lovely story. I’m sad it’s over. I couldn’t get enough of Evvie and Dean. They are two perfectly imperfect people. Women who have been in unhappy marriages will relate to Evvie. She’s the kind of woman you feel you could be friends with. Her romance with Dean felt genuine and real. Both of their insecurities were valid and relatable. I think you’ll want to add this to your TBR for June. I received this ARC from Netgalley.
Jessica Woodbury
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks, arc
This Book: I am about a woman leaving a terrible marriage who puts up walls to protect herself that end up hurting the people she loves.
Me: You are a delightful, cheery ball of fluff and I adore it.

Just to be clear, I do not really read happy books. When people ask me for something light and fluffy I respond with \_(ツ)_/. I like dark, serious, complex sh*t. But every now and then I will find a book that I find to be just a sunny, lovely, sweet bite of candy. To other people it may look like a ni
...more
Kate ☀️ Olson
(free review copy) Oh, I SO enjoyed this one ❤ Heartwarming, poignant, witty and so atmospheric- EVVIE DRAKE STARTS OVER is an ode to coastal Maine and the complexity of grief. It’s about fresh starts but also grappling with the past. Friends and lovers, truth and polite falsehoods, with some baseball thrown in for good measure.
...more
Marialyce
Unfortunately after reading 70% of this book, I am quitting. Reading this story was like taking a slow boat to nowhere.

It was just not for me.
Melinda
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not ashamed to admit that I actually clapped my hands with glee when I got approved for this one on Netgalley. I have been such a fan of Linda Holmes' work for about 20 years now, since her days of recapping tv shows on the internet and my days of secretly reading said recaps while being paid to do something else. Unfortunately, my devotion to Linda is perhaps matched only by my apathy for baseball. BUT. I loved this book so much, and it wasn't even *in spite of* the baseball. Like, even the ...more
Corinne Keener
Mar 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Rainbow Rowell Fans, Maria Semple Fans
Can you believe that after, I don't know, 45 years I finally won a GoodReads Giveaway? And it was for the first novel by Linda Holmes from NPR's Pop Culture Happy Hour? I'm still thrilled about it.

I read Evvie Drake Starts Over on vacation and I'm not going to say that is the only situation in which one should read and enjoy Evvie Drake Starts Over, but I am going to say it deserved the real estate it took up in my luggage.

Evvie Drake is a thirty-ish something living in coastal Maine and about t
...more
Susan Johnson
May 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars

I normally don't read books like this because I am old and cranky but I needed to cleanse my palate. It's like eating a heavy meal. You need a break. I have been reading a lot about abused women and lots of WWII novels that seem to be very popular right now. I needed to remind myself that there are normal people out there. This book was perfect for that. I am refreshed.

Evvie has recently lost her husband, her high school sweetheart and the town doctor. She rarely leaves her house exce
...more
Louise Miller
May 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the rarest of birds--a love story for adults. Not just a love story between two people, but a story about the love between friends, the love of family, and the love that you find for yourself by going through the hard stuff of living. It is warm and funny and real and smart in all the best ways. Treat yourself to this book--it's a marvelous reminder of some of the best things about being alive. And it takes place in coastal Maine, and has dogs and baseball, so, you know, it's perfect.
OLT
May 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a longtime romance reader, I've read plots very similar to this one before. But the plot is not what makes this special. It's the really good, fresh writing, the well-drawn, realistic, complex characters, the smart dialogue. All that is what makes this a very satisfactory contemporary romance about two 30-something characters with baggage who learn to accept themselves, baggage and all, and love each other, baggage and all.

One day Evvie Drake was all set, luggage in car, money in glove compar
...more
Jenna Hager
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was captivated by Evvie Drake right away, by the character of Evvie — and her predicament of finding herself as a young widow and trying to find herself after being in this marriage and being in this relationship since high school. You could really hear Evvie’s voice. You can imagine sitting at that kitchen table, and having a conversation with her, because these conversations feel so realistic that they’re like conversations we’ve all had. The sense of setting is so strong. As somebody who ha ...more
Jessica Jeffers
Jun 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss, fiction
I love Linda Holmes so much that a friend once asked me if that was my pen name and this book is adorable.
Leslie Schwartz
May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was so excited to read this, since I've been a fan of Linda Holmes's work for years - I love listening to Pop Culture Happy Hour and have been rooting for her to finish and release her book since she announced that she was working on it. This was such a fun read, and I spent a lot of time reading it outdoors in the sunshine (which was a great place to read this book). I loved:

-spending time with these characters, and especially loved Evvie's relationship with her best friend, Andy.
-the setting
...more
Becky
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I adored this book!! 4.5 stars, rounded to a 5!!

Evvie is a young woman living in Maine, the story starts with Evvie doing something with her life for herself & an upsetting "event" happens before she can continue with her plan.

Evvie is trying to pick up the pieces of her life, not doing such a great job of it. She has her life long friend, Adam & his girls & she has her dad, but even they don't know how Evvie is really doing.

Adam introduces Evvie to an old friend of his, Dean, hoping
...more
Stephanie
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just laughed,cried, and highlighted my way through this absolute gem of a book. My heart is so full right now – and so are my eyes.

I can’t quite put into words how much I loved it but I am 100% certain it will be on my top 10 of 2019 list. Absolute perfection.

It’s funny and witty and beautiful and all of the imperfectly perfect relationships within the pages are written flawlessly. I’m so glad I went with my instinct and bought this one. I know I want it on my shelves forever!
Aisling
Jun 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a nice, gentle sort of a book. Even some pretty extreme emotional issues were glossed over for the most part except for the one turning point in the book. The romantic hook up is satisfyingly steamy considering it took 2/3 of the book to get there. I enjoyed the characters and their relationships. This is a good book about starting over.
Laura Peden
3.5 stars rounded up. It wasn’t as funny as I was led to believe it was but it is a more realistic rom-com than most and the author is good with witty banter. I enjoyed the inclusion of baseball within the plot and the characters weren’t annoying. A good choice for a quick, light summer read.
Jen | Jen Talks Audiobooks
This was just perfect. The friendship, the romance, the dialogue, the story. It just all came together beautifully and Julia Whelan was amazing on audio.
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