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Once Upon a Time, There Was You: A Novel
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John and Irene's marriage only lasted eight short years. They divorced when their daughter, Sadie, was 8-years-old. Irene moved away making her the prime caregiver to Sadie and John visited when he could and had Sadie every August.

Their marriage and relationship was tenuous at best. In my opinion, it failed because of Irene. She is an odd character who is deeply lonely and neither she nor John had much in common other than their beloved Sadie.

When something terrible happens to Sadie, they come together and realize that in all these years they've never really figured each other out or even really knew how they felt about each other.

I loved the story but found Irene a very odd person, her own worst enemy at times. She wasn't ever happy, thought differently and perceived things differently than most people, but isn't that what makes each of us unique? Although the story involved John, Sadie, Irene and a few friends, I felt the story focused more on Irene than anyone. At times while reading I just felt like I wanted to yell at Irene: "Okay, okay just shut-up will ya!!! Geez!!" Her incessant chatter and what I call whining was weighing heavily on my nerves. I kept thinking "why?" are John and Sadie trying so hard with Irene, she "kept herself" miserable and couldn't seem to pull herself out of this narcissistic, lonely, complaining place she was in. The story was well-written and any author who can evoke such involvement and emotion in me definitely gets my thumbs up!!
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on August 13, 2011
I have read every book E.B. has written up to this point and she is to blame for my staying up all night not being able to put the book down...this is not one of those books. Not a bad read but she has certainly written better. The one incident that happens to the daughter seems to be really out of place in the novel and such a huge event is really under-stated and seems out of place with the rest of the story.
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on October 17, 2011
Elizabeth Berg's Once Upon a Time, There Was You is a deeply moving exploration of the complex ways in which our relationships, past and present, shape us.

Read more at Suite101: Book Review: Elizabeth Berg's Once Upon a Time, There Was You Suite101.com[...]
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on April 20, 2012
I love Berg but the last. two books were not up to standard. In this one the characters make unrealistic choices, and seem some what disconnected. Not a good read but any easy one
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