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This Close to Okay

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  5,324 ratings  ·  1,024 reviews
From the award-winning Southern writer who Roxane Gay calls "a consummate storyteller" comes a cathartic novel about the life-changing weekend shared between two strangers: a therapist and the man she prevents from ending his life.

On a rainy October night in Kentucky, recently divorced therapist Tallie Clark is on her way home from work when she spots a man precariously s
Hardcover, 311 pages
Published February 2nd 2021 by Grand Central Publishing
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  • This Close to Okay by Leesa Cross-Smith
    This Close to Okay

    Release date: Feb 02, 2021
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    Giveaway dates: Feb 02 - Mar 03, 2021

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    Popular Answered Questions
    Deby There is some, but not a whole lot. Some sexual situations, too.
    Thushara (Triobookdragons) I am pretty sure it will when it comes out on Feb 2! Books published by Grand Central Publishing are usually available on Audible.

    Community Reviews

    Showing 1-30
    Average rating 3.87  · 
    Rating details
     ·  5,324 ratings  ·  1,024 reviews

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    Jul 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
    Shelves: mine
    FIVE FLASHING GOLD STARS BC I THOUGHT IT, I SOLD IT, I WROTE IT, I LOVE IT. This is my second novel, my fourth book.
    Dec 30, 2020 rated it liked it
    I really love stories about two strangers coming together to help one another heal and form a unique connection through their journey. While the writing is lovely, I think the ending could have been stronger if executed differently, and I often found the dialogue between the characters to be very much like a personal Q&A, and thus a way for the characters to learn intimate details about each other quickly and easily. If you love the card game “We’re Not Really Strangers” you would probably enjoy ...more
    Michael David
    Dec 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

    December BOTM selection.

    Tallie Clark, a therapist who is recently divorced, is driving home from work one cold and rainy fall evening when she sees a man standing on the wrong side of a bridge railing. After some persuading, she convinces him to leave the bridge and chat with her over a cup of coffee. His name is Emmett, and while he is a man of little words, she quickly learns he doesn’t feel like he has anywhere to go. Tallie brings him to her home. (I know, I know...bu
    Jenny Lawson
    Jan 21, 2021 rated it really liked it
    I kept putting off this book because it's got a lot of suicide talk in it and I'm easily pulled into the darkness but I'd heard wonderful things about it (the book...not suicide) and felt mentally strong today so I read it and it was exactly as good as I'd been told. ...more
    Jan 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
    4.5 rounded up

    Well, this book was exactly what I needed to close out my January. I was on the struggle bus with pretty much everything I read. I can't even remember the last time I was in a reading slump, but this broke through that. I'm new to Leesa Cross-Smith, but something told me to check this story out. I had no idea what I was in for. Her writing is fantastic. It was so soothing and contemplative and therapeutic. There were very big themes discussed (suicide, grief, etc.), but it was neve
    mina reads™️
    Dnf @ page 52

    No offense but uhhhh what???
    Bryn Greenwood
    This is coming in February, with a blurb from me. I recommend, especially if you need something to heal your heart.
    Larry H
    Dec 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    Shelves: arc
    Wow. Leesa Cross-Smith's upcoming novel, This Close to Okay , is so emotional and thought-provoking.

    One rainy October night therapist Tallie Clark is driving home from work when she sees a man standing on a bridge, looking ready to jump. She gets out of her car and runs to the man, begging him not to jump. Miraculously, she is able to get him to come down and he agrees to go with her to get some coffee and perhaps talk about his feelings.

    After coffee, the man agrees to come back to Tallie’s h
    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
    Well son of a shit ball! I thought this was going to be something different. It wasn’t much for me but it might be more for you 😉

    Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
    Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
    Feb 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
    I reviewed Leesa Cross-Smith’s book of short stories last year and LOVED it, and it’s possible I loved this heartfelt novel even more.

    Roxane Gay has described Cross-Smith as a consummate storyteller, and that is precisely who she is. This Close to Okay is powerful and bold, with rich storytelling, and characters to champion.

    Also, big kudos to the author for how she addresses mental health.

    I received a gifted copy.

    Many of my reviews can also be found on my blog:
    Kate Jordhamo
    Dec 15, 2020 rated it liked it
    I wanted to love this, and was excited to read it based on the premise.

    The character development seemed to fall apart throughout the book — the decisions the characters made were sometimes bizarre and unexplainable. The last quarter of the book really felt apart for me from a storytelling perspective, as well.

    It also felt like it was trying to do too much, touch on too many issues, and the ball was dropped several times. I was especially irked with how the book dealt with mental health / suicid
    All these feels... I am wrecked and uplifted all in one.

    Shortest Summary Ever: Psychologist Tallie is driving across the bridge and suddenly stops when she sees a man about to jump. Talking him down, she offers him a ride... the story evolves from there as Tallie befriends Emmett...

    Thoughts: Man did this author crack open MY bag of feels. And I’m not a “feely” girl - I’m bad ass! I’m not crying... YOU’RE crying! That’s my face to the world. My TRUE face is one of struggle, years long with severa
    Dec 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Leesa Cross-Smith has written an intensely moving story about two strangers who meet under odd circumstances at just the right time for both of them. It’s a chance meeting that will change both of their lives in ways they both desperately need. These two couldn’t be any more different, but at that moment, they are two souls who need the acceptance each can offer. I literally read this book in one sitting; I could not put it down. Smith’s writing style was easy to follow, and I felt her character ...more
    Joshue Lemus
    Dec 20, 2020 rated it did not like it
    DNF at 30.

    I seriously regret wasting my BOTM on this book. Immediately, the characterization of Tallie is TERRIBLE. She’s incredibly judgmental towards a man who was just about to commit suicide, goes through his personal things, and invites him into her home a couple hours after just meeting him.

    At age 40, I’d expect Tallie to be more respectful, mature, and professional... she’s literally the opposite. Her thoughts read like a teenagers’, they’re very dramatic and immature. Can’t stand it. C
    Kate Niestrom
    Dec 27, 2020 rated it did not like it
    Shelves: botm-picks
    It's been a long time since I've actually considered abandoning a book. I've disliked many books over the years, but rarely do I ever think of giving up. "This Close to Okay" was an exception.

    First off, it's bleak, but that's not why I didn't like it. On a cold, rainy night, therapist Tallulah "Tallie" stops mysterious Emmett from jumping off a bridge. She coaxes him into her car, drives him home and allows him to stay with her until he feels stable. He doesn't offer much information up about h
    Reading_ Tam_ Ishly
    Feb 03, 2021 rated it it was ok
    Love the writing. But plot wise and character wise, I just cannot wrap my head around this. I mean this one is quite problematic. Like seriously!

    *Taking my time to calm down. Let's see if I write more on this book.

    Jan 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
    ❤️ Perfect start to the year.
    Eva K (journeyofthepages)
    This Close to Okay by Leesa Cross-Smith is an important story that touches on a number of really relevant topics in mental health. I believe this story of two strangers finding a way to help one another is well told with solid character development and steady intrigue. 

    First, this story takes place in October in Kentucky, so the Autumnal vibes and Halloween themes were all over this one. If you're lining up Autumn reads and want some that aren't scary, add this to your tbr! 

    This story is intimat
    Dec 19, 2020 rated it did not like it
    No to the Jesus crap. If you want to sell Christian fiction, put a warning label on it.

    I tried to choke that down and get into the story, but the characterization is unbelievably bad. What is it with BOTM and shitty "therapist" characters? Don't even get me started on "lesbian half the time."

    This is a crappy book, even if you're into the religious garbage.
    Dec 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    OMG, I have to gather my emotions. I felt every emotion I can feel. Wow, the sweetest heartwarming book I ever read. Strangers come into each other's lives and help each other work on things they couldn't let go amongst themselves. All it takes is a stranger to come into one's life and give hope you never know what a person is deeply going through inside. I cried it was so moving and touching in every way possible. A powerful read you can’t help but love the characters I enjoyed following their ...more
    Feb 06, 2021 marked it as to-read
    I hope it is not similar to normal people.
    Jill Reads
    Dec 10, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: netgalley
    “This Close to Okay” is a fictional story that alternates between two people who meet in a super-random way. Emmett is sitting on a bridge, waiting to jump. And Tallie, a therapist, is driving by and comes to his rescue. The rest of the story is their 3-day(ish) journey together. It’s about how these two strangers come together when they are at their loneliest, and try to hide parts of themselves—for as long as they can.

    On many occasions, I thought to myself, “This would never happen.” I also wa
    Renée | Book Girl Magic
    Feb 17, 2021 rated it really liked it
    This book broke me!! 😭😭 I sat on my couch for at least an hour afterwards processing this book and the rollercoaster of emotions it took me through. Another well written piece by Leesa Cross-Smith. I found myself wiping tears from the last bit of the book. I really grew to love the main characters Tallie and Emmett/Rye. Especially Rye. I related to Tallie on a major level, being a divorced woman myself and trying to deal with a pain similar to hers, but I had a definite weak spot for Rye. The wh ...more
    Olivia Caridi
    Dec 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
    I loved this book! Hoped for a different ending, but enjoyed it nonetheless. Finished in one sitting!
    Kendra Wright
    Dec 25, 2020 rated it it was ok
    A big meh from me. This was my first BOTM pick and it bombed for me. I honestly forced myself to finish it. It had a lot of potential, but just fell flat. I could NOT handle the play-esque stage writing that broke in every so often. She explains it later, and the reasoning behind it makes sense. However, it was confusing as the reader and really halted the flow of the story prior to understanding its purpose.

    I will say this though - people are upset with how Tallie, a therapist, behaved. While i
    Jan 14, 2021 rated it did not like it
    "And now, the continuing story of a former orthopedic surgeon who's gone to the dogs."

    Wait, scratch that, this is not an old-school Muppets sketch, just the continuation of my Book of the Month (BotM) adventure.

    This was my second selection for December 2020.

    Full disclosure, I am a mental health provider who specializes in suicide prevention, so I should have known better than to read this.

    Therapy is rarely presented accurately in works of fiction (with some notable exceptions, like Sopranos, Te
    Sydnee's Book Nook
    Feb 09, 2021 rated it it was amazing
    Genuinely beautiful, light filled, and pure. Leesa Cross-Smith’s writing is beyond compare and her characters are wonderfully written. This is a work of art.
    Meryl Wilsner
    Jan 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
    Shelves: aoc, dual-pov
    Leesa Cross-Smith's writing always makes me feel at home. Loved and safe. This is no exception.

    (view spoiler)
    Caroline Craig David
    Oct 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
    This was a super deep, emotional book about love, loss, longing, and learning. I really liked Leesa Cross-Smith wrote and executed her story. I would definitely read more from her.
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    Leesa Cross-Smith is a homemaker and writer from Kentucky. She is the author of THIS CLOSE TO OKAY, SO WE CAN GLOW, WHISKEY & RIBBONS, EVERY KISS A WAR, and the forthcoming novel HALF-BLOWN ROSE from Grand Central Publishing. THIS CLOSE TO OKAY was a Book of the Month Early Release Pick for December 2020 and the Good Housekeeping Book Club Pick for February 2021. She is longlisted for the 2021 Joy ...more

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