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4.1 out of 5 stars
Nice to Come Home To
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on April 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover
When I read a book, I'm looking for a lot--a great sense of place, characters that I actually care about, and a story that feels like it's going somewhere. I like to feel that these characters mean something to me, going about their lives in an interesting place, doing interesting things, and that stuff is going on.

Pru and her sister seem real, seem like women I've known, have hopes and desperation and humor the likes of which I know, and their lives don't seem like programmed steps in a novel-writing formula of what-should-happen-next, but instead unfold with the real, gentle grace of real life ... only a bit wittier, a bit snappier, and with a bit more style. The writing is really smart, funny, and has such a great voice--if you don't know exactly what that means, read this book--you'll start to see and hear the world through Pru (and Flowers's) gimlet eye--sharp, whip smart, and with a tangy wit.

And the story goes on in two fully realized places, both DC and the beach ... I've read a lot of fiction with a great sense of place--from Marcus Sakey's Chicago to Elmore Leonard's Detroit and Miami, Lehane's Boston, and Pelecanos's DC ... and while Flowers isn't hard boiled like those guys, she creates a DC that is real and lived in and immediate, just like Pelecanos and the rest ... a really lovely, meaningful, and intelligent book, that stayed with me long after I put it down. Good stuff.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Format: Hardcover
If it looks like chick-lit, it must be, huh? But that ain't necessarily so.

It's hard to deny that the marketing of 'Nice to Come Home To' is geared towards the female gender, but that would be selling it short. The story encompasses more than girl-stuff. It's life-stuff.

Flowers makes her characters real: situations, dialogue, development and flaws. The reader can relate to all - even the cat. The writing is smart and clever which is what is usually missing in most novels that get pigeon-holed into this market.

I'd encourage you to check the book out - regardless of age or gender. I believe 'Nice to Come Home To' would be something anyone who picked it up would enjoy.

I did.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I loved this book. As the other reviewer notes, it does draw on "Sense and Sensibility" for its plot, but the updating is so clever, and the characters so true, it completely stands on its own merits. Rebecca Flowers has the gift of making you chortle and sob in the same scene, and her prose is just beautiful. This is the story of a woman who initially cannot get out of her own way, but thanks to Flowers' compassion and genius, Prudence still manages to find her true self, and true love. This novel is fresh, smart and utterly relatable for any single (or formerly single) woman. I can't wait to read it again!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on May 10, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This wonderful novel kept me engaged from the first line and drew me in throughout. The characters come to life with all the comedic lumps, twisted flaws and sincere beauty we find in our own lives. Rebecca Flowers' unique voice as a storyteller, her clever, witty phrasing and insights left me very satisfied as a reader. You know you have read a great book when you don't want the story to end because you will dearly miss the characters. Might we hear more from these characters in the future? I hope so. I will definitely follow this author and I anxiously await her next novel. I recommend Nice to Come Home To to anyone looking to read a thoughtful, intelligent novel from an aspiring new author. A great read!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on May 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
It's understandable, considering it's literary model, but at the outset Pru is lacking dimension. After nearly 100 pages, I was ready to commit and finish reading the novel. Suddenly, I cared. The conflicts were piling up, needing resolution.

Though I appreciated and admired them, scenes, phrases, and even metaphors sometimes seemed forced. It's as if Ms. Flowers was determined to include each great idea and observation she's had, even if it wasn't a perfect fit. (I must confess that I may be too hard on her simply because I recognize what I perceive as the weaknesses of my own feeble attempts at writing.)

All in all, I enjoyed the book and continue to think about its characters and setting. Pru became fully realized, and her Patsy's situation was entirely lifelike and compelling. The character John Owen is just right (very Austen). I recommend perusing this author's website and blog, which are entertaining and helpful for aspiring writers, and for her fans.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on January 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
As a DC area urbanite, there are some glaring flaws in this book:

1) What non-profit worker can afford her own apartment in Adams Morgan and shop for designer clothes?
2) What DC resident would forget about having a family owned beach house (ON THE BEACH!!!) in Rehobeth?
3) What gay couple BFFs would allow the main character to forget/never go to the beach house? They would be camped out there from May-September.

Aside from that, if I were an unmarried woman in my 30s, this would make me want to slit my wrists with a butter knife.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on June 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Nice to Come Home To is based on Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, but it's easy to forget that the story is a retelling as Pru (Prudence) navigates her way through the realities of family trials and dating past thirty. Pru is always the voice of reason and when her sister Patsy (Patience) visits DC with her quirky, disorganized personality that is the polar opposite of Pru's, she knows she must continue to be the strong one for Patsy. Unfortunately for Pru, family visits are never orderly or predictable. Readers will laugh and their hearts will ache with Pru as she tries too hard to keep her feelings about men and her family bottled up inside.

Peopled with colorful Characters and set in the neighborhood of Adams Morgan in Washington, DC, a setting that Rebecca Flowers seems to know inside and out, Nice to Come Home to is an exceptional read. This funny, witty novel will likely keep readers up past midnight to see if Pru will ever be able to let go of taking care of everyone else and finally let someone else walk beside her.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 6, 2010
Format: Paperback
A subtle, but refreshing take on another chick lit dedicated to the unconventional life/romance. The concept is there, but it took 3/4 of the book to finally get things rolling. It dragged on with lengthy paragraphs of Pru's observances/thoughts (many of it repeating itself so by the time you've reached halfway, you've already seen Pru's point many times over - you're just waiting on her to get to the point!). The better part of the book dwells mostly on her daily activities and overthinking, and so you'll find yourself getting bored quite quickly. There are scenes that'll grab your attention but then suddenly it fizzles off once Pru is back on overthinking/inactivity mode. It's not til the end that you'll start to feel the strong emotional ride with Pru. It's a slow book that spends entirely way too much time on scenes that doesn't need to be dwelt on and not enough on those that does.*
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I absolutely loved your book. It was a truly fun read. I love your detail, wit, compassion and the characters. The scene with the pet psychiatrist had me laughing out loud. What a vivid moment. I felt like I was right there in the room, and that cat definitely is alive and well far beyond the pages. The suspense of who would stay in love, fall in love, end up happy etc. kept me turning the pages. As a matter of fact, I read much of it while flying to Florida for a week of performances, and finished it en route home. In all my years of flying as frequently as I do, a trip has never gone so fast because time was suspended as I was absorbed by Pru and her crew of unique family and friends. Great Read! From Judy Gail Krasnow, author of the memoir, "Rudolph, Frosty, And Captain Kangaroo."
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on April 10, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book is a definite re-reader for me. It seems to be an updated Sense and Sensibility, but it's so fresh I think I was halfway through the book before I recognized it. The authot twists it up nicely so there were plenty of surprises, even for a huge Austen fan like me.

Flowers has a flair for language and a nice, light touch with humor. I like the fact that her characters seemed like real people---people I would want to know. Flawed, yes, but smart and funny and kind. And the character of "Big Whoop" makes this book worth reading all on his own!
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