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Trade Reviews

  Library Journal Review

Patterson in a romantic mood: Jennifer discovers that a beloved family member has long harbored a secret passion and then succumbs to a passion of her own. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Booklist Review

After the success of Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas (2001), it should surprise no one that Patterson is trying his hand at another romantic tale, and this one is every bit as enjoyable as its predecessor. Jennifer, a Chicago Tribune columnist who's still mourning the death of her beloved husband, Danny, is jolted out of her lonely life when she receives news that her grandmother, Sam, has taken a fall and is now in a coma. Racing up to Lake Geneva to be by her grandmother's bedside, Jennifer discovers a packet of letters at Sam's house, which are addressed to her. They are from Sam; in them, Sam tells Jennifer that her husband was not the great love of her life. Instead, Sam was swept off her feet by a man she calls Doc, whom she still loves to this day. As Jennifer learns some shocking secrets about her grandmother, she finds herself falling under the spell of a handsome neighbor, Brendan. Jennifer is surprised to find she is able to love again after Danny, but just when you think Jennifer's life can't be touched by any more tragedy, she learns a sad secret about Brendan. Patterson is infamous for surprising his readers, though, and the ending to this novel is unexpected, touching, and satisfying. Another winner from Patterson, sure to draw the same audience as Suzanne's Diary. --Kristine Huntley Copyright 2004 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

Patterson, a former ad man turned megaselling author (The Lake House, 2003, etc.), makes a calculated and obvious appeal to the widest possible reader demographic. Hugs and kisses, love everlasting, happy tears, and advice from the hereafter--well, at least it's not another trite book about a dead spouse who likes to talk. It's a grandmother whose swift and tidy demise begins this epistolary mushfest. But Sam's granddaughter Jennifer is a young widow who uses words like "awesome," "totally," and "very cool" a lot. Anyway, Jennifer is numb with shock when Sam breathes her last. What will she do? Where will she go? Why, to Sam's lakefront cottage, where she finds a cache of letters, conveniently bundled and sorted. Jennifer begins to read them. But she misses Sam so, so much, Jennifer just wants to cry and cry--and she does. Why, it was Sam who gently coaxed her out of her shell and removed her veil of sadness. But there was so much she didn't know about her beloved grandmother. Can it be true that Sam didn't love Grandpa Charles after 26 tedious years of marriage, child-rearing, and household drudgery? Sniff, sniff. Life is so sad. Funny and sad. There are so many letters. This one is about Doc, the man who taught Sam to laugh again and gave her a second chance at love when she was in her 40s and her spirit was drying up like a bug in a web in a corner of a dusty room. How sad and funny is that? Jennifer thinks it would be awesome if she could learn to love again too. Then she meets Brendan, who is so, so cute and nice. Brendan does a very cool thing: he performs mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on Euphoria, her stricken cat. Wow! Will Euphoria live? Will Jennifer still want to kiss Brendan if he tastes like a hairball? Love, like, totally conquers all. Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Summary
A New York Times Bestselling Author Jennifer returns to the resort town where she grew up to help a beloved relative - and ends up experiencing not one but two of the most amazing love stories she's ever known. In letters that Jennifer finds, it is revealed that her relative has held a secret for decades. Her great love was someone other than the man she was married to for all those years. As Jennifer reads the letters she learns more about love's imperatives and secrets than she ever dreamed possible. And then Jennifer finds her own great love, but at a cost.
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