Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Book Review: Anne Tyler's The Beginner's Goodbye

Anne Tyler is an author I welcome into my home regularly. I can always count on her smooth writing, well developed characters, and insight into the human condition. Her gentle humor prevails and her books are a treat.

The Beginner's Goodbye explores how a middle-aged man, ripped apart by the death of his wife, is gradually restored by her frequent appearances - in their house, on the roadway, and in the market.  (book blurb)

Aaron never thought he'd get married, but Dorothy, an unassuming doctor, came into his life and made him happy. Her shockingly abrupt death puts Aaron back at square one. However, as he works in his family's vanity publishing business, he learns through some of the self-help titles that there is a way to say goodbye.

This book is not maudlin. I chuckled as Aaron tries to evade his older bossy sister and muster gumption to move on in life.

P. 122 In regards to Dorothy:
Only I knew that underneath her boxy clothes, she was the shape of a little clay urn. Her skin had a burnished olive glow, and there was a kind of calm to her, a lit-from-within calm, that made me feel at rest whenever I was with her.

The Beginner's Goodbye is a quick read guided by the sure hand of a skilled writer.


  1. Love these summer read suggestions. Now for a cool glass of lemonaide. Always a pleasure to read a well written book (and in my age group).

  2. Looks like a good read. If I ever finish my current read(s), I'll have to check it out.

  3. I've read a couple of reviews of this book, and yours is the only positive one. I might give it a go.